Advice on assessment

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Joined: Thu Jul 07, 2016 9:47 am

Advice on assessment

Postby Rosiedoodle » Fri Jul 15, 2016 12:06 pm

Hi everyone

I'm completely new to this. My cousin's daughter was removed from her mother's care in March when she was just 3 weeks old. She's now in the care of the LA. My family asked if I'd contact the LA and let them know who I was etc... I had a call from the social worker 2 weeks ago and I've been told that the mum is currently undergoing parental assessment. The baby has a number of physical injuries at 3 weeks of age.
When I had the call the SW said that time was tight and wanted to email me the viability assessment form over. My husband and I completed it and returned it the following day. We have since had the DBS online forms to complete. I've heard from the SW today and she's said they're not back yet but she wants to do a telephone interview with my husband and I on Tuesday and it should take about an hour to do.
Firstly what should be expect to be asked? The viability assessment was quite in depth and covered how we would care for the child, schooling, support we have, education, employment, access to services in the area was 12 pages long.

Also we actually don't know what type of care we would be looking at. I know the baby was on the 'at risk' register before birth and obviously with the injuries she suffered I'm not sure she will be going back to her mum. Is it reasonable to ask on Tuesday what the plan is for her. The final hearing is in September so it's all very much a rush.

We live about 200 miles away and have 2 school age children so we are concerned about contact arrangements and if it would be up to us to travel? My children also have swimming lessons on a Saturday. It's too much to do in a day, it's a 3 hour drive each way. My children are 4 and 8.

There's apparently another family member being assessed on the mothers side however she's in Ireland. (my connection is on the father's side, the baby is my second cousin)

Any help and advice would be very much appreciated. Thanks in advance

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Re: Advice on assessment

Postby ied53 » Fri Jul 15, 2016 4:15 pm

Hello. I should imagine initially they would e looking at you being family foster carers " connected persons". If the decision is made for the child not to e returned to mother then they would want you to seek an order giving the child permanence either SGO ( special Guardianship Order) this order outs you in control as you exercise Parental responsibility (PR) to the exclusion of all others or Child Arrangement Order (CAO) for which you share decisions with the parents. You say there is another person being assessed - cross border cases are far more difficult for the law to sort as the laws are different. As for contact initially it may e quite frequent due to the child's age but is often reduced once decisions are made. We insisted that the parents did the travelling not us though on occasions if it suited needs be did travel. The level of contact also seems to vary greatly so you may need to be quite firm in your negotiations. The questioning is intrusive but they are placing a child with you. Oh and incase you are concerned most carers have "skeletons in the closet" or a medical condition they may concern them after all we have lived . They will use all assessments to consider a permanent solution as they will want this for the child if they cannot e returned to Mum. I have had care of my Grandchildren for 11yrs and SGO for 9yrs. Hubby and I felt that order gave the children more protection and us more control.
Grandparent carer in Lincolnshire
Tough times never last tough people do

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