Social services lying

EDY92
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Joined: Sat May 23, 2020 2:24 am

Social services lying

Post by EDY92 » Mon Jun 22, 2020 7:09 pm

I posted a while back about how my partner has been accused of IIOC

social services told me he wasn’t allowed any unsupervised contact, the contact was arranged to be through his mother. I have stuck by this. He has only seen the children via his mother.

The social worker turned up at my house this afternoon saying they’ve had intelligence that ex has been to my house with the kids. This is simply untrue and hasn’t EVER happened since he was taken away from the police.

My parents are paying for me to get a solicitor but where exactly do I stand?

She said they are going to a child protection case? What does this even mean? I wasn’t told anything, just that I’m being accused of lying because she has a witness saying he was here with the kids yesterday. Again, I don’t know how when it never happened and no-one expect the police and social services know why we are no longer together and he’s moved out.. so what does that mean?! Someone apparently knows about why he’s no longer living here ?! But why lie?!

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Suzie, FRG Adviser
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Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2011 2:57 pm

Re: Social services lying

Post by Suzie, FRG Adviser » Mon Jul 13, 2020 11:10 am

Dear EDY92

Thank you for your further post and sorry for not my late response to your query.

I think you were working with children’s services on a child in need basis but now they are undertaking a child protection investigation which may lead to an initial child protection conference.

The reason that the case has escalated is because the social worker has been informed by an unknown source that your partner was present in your home, with the children. I guess the concern stated is that, if so, he was unsupervised which is against the temporary safely plan that was put in place. I understand that you refute this completely and state that he has only ever had the contact which was agreed to be safe i.e. supervised by his mother. I am sure that you have told the social worker this too. However, they are now concerned that the children may be at risk of significant harm and so have a legal duty to investigate.

The best thing to do is to continue to cooperate and to ensure that you keep to the arrangements that have been agreed. If you are adamant that you have never allowed unsupervised contact then you should say so; similarly if you were coerced or made a mistake and did allow him home you should say so too. It is always best to be open and honest. Of course, your partner should also be challenged about this as the concern is around his alleged behaviour; he can proactively contact the social worker too, to discuss. Although children’s services became involved because of police investigating your partner for alleged downloading of child sexual images they are looking to you to be a protective parent so it is important that you continue to work with the professional group to demonstrate this.

In my last response I suggested some resources that you may find useful as they are designed for mothers in your situation. If you have not had a chance to look into them yet it might be a good idea to now, as you are now in a child protection process. If there is a conference you could show that you are developing your understanding and insight in order to protect your children.

You may find our child protection procedures advice sheet advice sheet and FAQs on child protection to be helpful.
We also have tips on preparing for a child protection conference , should you need them. They will help you prepare for a conference if that happens. Most conferences are now ‘virtual’ so do ask your social worker to clarify exactly what format it would take and how you would be involved.

It is great that your parents are paying for you to get some help from a solicitor. You will be able to discuss the situation fully with them and get their advice.

I hope this is helps.

With best wishes
Suzie

HH_Dad
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Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2019 7:05 pm

Re: Social services lying

Post by HH_Dad » Wed Nov 04, 2020 11:05 am

I am afraid that nothing surprises me when it comes to Social Services. Almost two years ago they got involved with my family due to an incorrect diagnosis by a hospital. Despite the fact that neither my wife or I had even been in trouble before, had never been arrested, had always been in employment etc, they decided we were guilty and treated us shambolically.

They delved into my family, tried digging up dirt on us and when they found nothing, they resorted to telling blatant, blatant, lies and would behave disgracefully to - in my view - trigger a response from us. Just a couple of examples I can give you; we were made to hold a Family Network Meeting. The two social workers read out what they called a 'Danger Statement' and said some terrible things about my wife and me. They were pointing the finger at us even though it was eventually proved we had done nothing wrong. There were 15 people in attendance at the meeting and none of us were provided with a copy of the statement yet when I complained about this months later, they swore we had all been given a copy. Also, my wife and I had been phoning our daughter each evening before bed, as she was stating with a relative temporarily. One of the social workers (wish I could name them, but I better not) phoned me and said to me "all phone contact with your daughter must cease". Eventually, after I complained and escalated it, they backed down on this but again when I complained months down the line, they flatly denied this and said they had "actively encouraged phone contact".

I do not trust most social workers at all and as for our Local Authority, to label them incompetent would be the understatement of the decade. Most social workers are unpleasant people and love the power they have. Innocent until proven guilty? No such thing when it comes to social services, I am afraid.

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Suzie, FRG Adviser
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Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2011 2:57 pm

Re: Social services lying

Post by Suzie, FRG Adviser » Mon Nov 16, 2020 4:46 pm

Dear HH Dad

Welcome back to the parents’ discussion board and thank you for your post. I am sorry to hear that your experience of working with children’s services was poor. You have given some examples of situations where you had not been given information that should have been provided to you and where there appear to be discrepancies between what happened and what was acknowledged.

You rightly challenged where necessary which is of course an option open to parents when there is a dispute. Here is our advice sheet on challenging decisions and making complaints which sets out how parents can make a complaint if they need to.

Some parents may also find this charter of mutual expectations helpful as it aims to promote effective, mutually respectful partnership working between practitioners and families when children are subject to statutory intervention.

However, it is worth noting, for the benefits of other parents, that social workers are responsible for supporting and protecting vulnerable children, there is government guidance which sets out how they should work with families (see An introduction to children’s services) and the standard of proof in family cases is ‘on the balance of probabilities’ i.e. more likely than not rather than the criminal standard of proof which is ‘beyond reasonable doubt’.

I hope your situation may have moved forward now but if you did want to speak to an adviser about it please call our freephone advice helpline on 0808 8010366, between 9.30 am and 3.00 pm, Mon to Fri.

With best wishes

Suzie

HH_Dad
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Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2019 7:05 pm

Re: Social services lying

Post by HH_Dad » Wed Nov 25, 2020 4:48 pm

Hi Suzie,

The situation my wife and I found ourselves in came to a sudden end in March 2019 when the first of two expert witnesses confirmed that our son did not have "multiple fractures", as the hospital had suggested and, in fact, all he had was a tiny "toddler facture" in his left leg which - he said - had not needed treating and in all likelihood, our son could well have done himself whilst attempting to climb/roll about. The expert witness said he was unequivocal that there was no suggestion of child abuse. But, the point I'm trying to highlight is that my wife and I - despite being the ones who took him down to the hospital to have him looked at - were immediately treated like the scum of the earth and as though we were guilty by Social Services before they had even spoken to us. That cannot be right.

I could provide you with a list as long as my arm of the mistakes the LA made including emailing me details of another family altogether which contained names, addresses, date of births, mobile numbers and GP details. The people assigned to us were amateurs and appeared to thrive on the power they had. Incidentally, although I shall not name the Local Authority in question, a few months after our case ended they made the news as they were graded 'INADEQUATE'.

My wife and I had them all over us; they would not leave us alone with our children, they watched our every move. They told blatant lies about us and then when the first expert came back with his findings the Judge invited the LA to withdraw from proceedings which they did. And when we complained about it all we got back was more lies and the 'we were just doing our jobs' line. More should be done to highlight what goes on because it is disgusting. They come in heavy handed and treat people disgracefully. It's like they won't even entertain for a second that the hospital and so-called experts there could be wrong. And I know from first hand experience they do make mistakes.

PerfectlySafeDad
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Re: Social services lying

Post by PerfectlySafeDad » Sat Nov 28, 2020 7:50 pm

they made the news as they were graded 'INADEQUATE'.
Well, that does not narrow down which Local Authority, HH_Dad, the anonymity is safe.
Many things about their way of working and policies and premises and attitude cannot be right.
You have a human rights violation in the account you gave, but pressing it legally would be well nigh impossible I imagine, they are so protected in their place they occupy in our society (on the fringes of the law, indeed outside it much of the time, able to justify breaking criminal law - as in assumption of guilt - by harnessing family law).

HH_Dad
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Re: Social services lying

Post by HH_Dad » Tue Dec 01, 2020 4:39 pm

I just wanted to briefly explain a few other matters. Early on in this nightmare for my wife and I, I contacted a former doctor in America who specialises in helping parents wrongly accused. I probably should not have sent him the reports etc, but I was desperate for help and advice. He highlighted to me the hospital’s report was full of ‘could be...’, ‘might be...’, ‘possibly...’ There wasn’t one area where the doctor in question was certain of anything. My wife and I requested the full hospital report – every single bit of paperwork which we eventually got. There were five or six other medical experts who had had dealings with our son and they had all questioned the main doctor who was the Named Doctor for Safeguarding. The other medics had commented that they could not see the fractures being reported. Early on with the proceedings my wife and I attended a meeting which was attended by several people from the LA, the Guardian etc. We clearly asked whether we could arrange for our son’s x-rays and medical records to be sent to an independent expert who we had found online for a second opinion. We would not intercept any of the x-rays or documents – everything would be sent directly from the NHS/hospital to the independent expert we had found. The expert we found examined every x-ray (two sets were done, two weeks apart) and reported in his findings ‘I could not convince myself of the presence of any fracture lines’.

This was forwarded to our solicitors and on to the LA etc but what followed was a backlash from them (the LA). They asked why the parents were doing this, said they had not authorised this (they had – and we had written evidence) and said we were behaving in a suspicious manner. Everything we said or did was twisted to make it look sinister. Eventually they did apologise for this and we were told that the Guardian had in fact been told about the independent person we had found but he had been so busy he had missed it in his emails.

When the bundle of paperwork arrived from the NHS, on the very first page they had our son’s name wrong (not a typo – completely incorrect surname), the wrong date of birth and the wrong x-ray dates. The level of incompetence from the NHS and Local Authority was astonishing. I wish I was able to show the documents to prove this but, alas, I cannot.

Finally, after the whole saga came to an end my wife and contacted everyone we could to make them aware of this shambles. We complained to the NHS, to the GMC, to the Police, to the Local Authority, we wrote to our local MP and we contacted the BBC. The BBC sent their main Education and Social Affairs reporter to our house. She interviewed us and was simply speechless. In fact, I do not even think she would have believed some of this had we not had proof of all of it. She wanted to run a story but it is tricky because the final court order prohibits it. There were ways around it, but in the end we decided not to go down that route. We met with the LA’s Head of Safeguarding and mentioned that during about 30 ‘Contact Sessions’ we were made to attend it was documented by numerous individuals that our behaviour was entirely appropriate, our children appeared to love us and got upset when they had to leave. His response to that was ‘there is a belief that abused children love their abusers’. Well, what chance does anyone have with remarks such as that?

We pointed out that there were a myriad of indictors that showed they might actually be wrong:

- We were the ones who had taken our son to get looked at
- Neither my wife or I had ever been in trouble before
- We’d had no dealings with Social Services before
- We had never been arrested before
- Our house was searched; we don’t smoke or do drugs etc
- We both have good jobs (I understand even people with good jobs can be abusers, but just stating the fact)
- Our son’s childminder hadn’t seen any cause for concern
- Our son had had his 12-month check-up not long before this started – no issues
- We had seen no issues except that our son started holding his left foot hence why we took him to get looked at
- We attended 30 contact sessions – not one concern or issue was raised

When we asked him (the Head of Safeguarding at the LA) what his thoughts were on this his reply, verbatim, was: ‘if there is a 1% chance of any wrongdoing, I’ll come in and tear the family apart’.

‘Social Services’. Don’t make me laugh. How can anyone defend any of this?

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Suzie, FRG Adviser
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Re: Social services lying

Post by Suzie, FRG Adviser » Sat Dec 12, 2020 3:24 pm

Dear HHDad,

Thank you for your response. I am, again, very sorry to hear about your negative experience with children’s services. It is clear that you have acted proactively to address what you felt were shortcomings and have addressed these through the appropriate channels.
Just to reiterate, that whilst the involvement of social workers in your life felt extremely intrusive, children’s services are under a duty to act to safeguard children who they believe have suffered or are at risk at harm, based on the evidence available. It sounds as though in your situation, this initial evidence was later refuted by an expert within court proceedings and that proceedings were subsequently ended. This perhaps highlights the importance of serious cases being decided within the court arena, as it affords a necessary level of assessment, independence and scrutiny.
I am pleased to hear that your case has moved forward. If you do want to speak to an adviser, you can call our free advice helpline on 0808 8010366 between 9am and 3pm, Mon to Fri.
Best wishes.
Suzie

PerfectlySafeDad
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Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2016 2:57 am

Re: Social services lying

Post by PerfectlySafeDad » Mon Dec 14, 2020 12:44 am

'This perhaps highlights the importance of serious cases being decided within the court arena, as it affords a necessary level of assessment, independence and scrutiny.' Yes, that's all well and good, but what about the immense time and stress and (probably) money involved in this? Parents do not recover from these experiences. It's so wrong that the SS can put a person through this based on what is nothing more than 'supposition' - which English law has been designed to protect a person against for centuries.
Also, one apparently minor matter stands out for me in all HHDad's case: 'Doctor for Safeguarding'. I must admit I've never heard of such a thing but no surprise that it exists. Well, it shouldn't. For Christs's sake, a Doctor is a doctor, and that should be his status, function and only definition. At once his judgements are going to be skewed and his feelings influenced. It has the weight of a Holy Calling about it, which immediately corrupts a person with whatever power they wield. They will wield it, to aggrandize themselves and to cover their back at the very least. A prime example of this witch hunt. If everybody simply went about their business in a caring manner, then anything untoward would be discovered anyway, without the need to have what is nothing less than an instituted Inquisition where people snoop and suspect across the board. Astonishing tale of human rights abuse and state persecution, which of course will not reach any significant publicity because of secrecy laws (for the benefit of the children - ha! - yes, so the SS can go on needlessly traumatizing many more families and their children just to be sure).

HH_Dad
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Re: Social services lying

Post by HH_Dad » Wed Dec 16, 2020 5:00 pm

PerfectlySafeDad, you are spot on with regards to the immense time, stress and money involved. We were made to attend family court a total of four occasions and had the same judge throughout. In our case - and again, I shall not name individuals (I wish I could though) - our children came back home during proceedings on the agreement that a relative stayed with us to 'supervise'. Our solicitors informed us this was unprecedented. The judge commented "I have read the raft of positive feedback [from 30 contact sessions and references] about the parents" and authorised them to come back home. Also, upon the LA withdrawing from proceedings, the Judge commented on what my family had been put through and that consideration should be given to "the cost to the public purse". How much money must this have cost the Local Authority?

With regards to the point you make about the position of Named Doctor for Safeguarding, several people we spoke with said exactly the same thing; if that is their job, as soon as they have any inclination there could be foul play, from that point on that is all they are looking for. The Doctor who triggered the saga for us said she thought our son had four fractures. But, right at the beginning at the hospital she said she thought he also had a broken arm (so five fractures). It was absurd. Our son could not have been happier and was zooming up and down the ward. We asked how could he possible have the fractures she said. The very next day, she told us to forget about the arm, as the arm was fine. Baffling how that changed in the space of 24 hours.

All of the correspondence and emails I received from the LA via my solicitor at the start had my son's name in the subject field followed by 'MULTIPLE FRACTURES'. However, once they received a copy of the report from the independent specialist we had arranged which stated he could not commit to seeing any factures, their emails/correspondence changed to: 'XXXX - POSSIBLE INJURIES'.

My wife and I and various relatives believe that the LA/Social Services came in aggressively and very heavy handed and could see quite early on they had got it wrong thus slowly started backtracking.

Having not had a day off work for 15-years, I found myself having to be signed off for several weeks due to stress. When I explained to my doctor - whom I have known for 20+ years - what was going on, he shook his head in horror and said when a hospital hits the panic button, all common sense goes out of the window. He shook my hand and wished me all the best.

Thankfully, there were a couple of people involved with this who actually listened to us and did apply common sense. One, of course, was the judge, and the other was a social worker who was thoroughly exasperated by the process. Unfortunately, though, there are far too many social workers who are drunk on the power they are given. One such person who was at the Family Network Meeting early on with it looked to be in her 20's and when we asked her if she would allow our children back home she said "no" and went on to say "the judge would be ill-advised to go against my recommendations". Who do these people think they are and just how on earth do they end up in positions where they can take children off parents in such a manner? It is absolutely disgraceful and I know for a fact my case is not an isolated incident.

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