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Post by connifer » Tue Aug 22, 2017 6:15 pm

My children were on a child protection order, as social services thought I was a drinker, I did a hair strand test that came back clear. So the case was closed last December. Four days ago I went to a party had a drink by the time I got home as were waiting removed my children from me to my sister's. They are home now but I'm not allowed to be left alone with them, I don't know how long for, they have called a conference already told us children will be back on protection and they might seek legal advice? Can they do all this when we weren't on a open case?

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Suzie, FRG Adviser
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Re: Conference

Post by Suzie, FRG Adviser » Fri Aug 25, 2017 11:51 am

Dear connifer,

Welcome back to the parents Forum.
I am glad to hear that children services closed their case last December. I understand children services had been worried about you abusing alcohol but you were tested for this and your hair strand test came back clean. Is that why the case was closed last year?
The answer to your question is that a new case must have been opened.
It sounds like a further urgent referral had been made to children services about you drinking alcohol at a party. They were sufficiently concerned, to open a new case and come out and do an urgent visit and assessment.
When they saw you and your children, did they assess your children as being at serious risk of being harmed or in imminent danger?

Children services cannot remove children from parents unless a parent agrees or they have a court order (or the police do it under police protection). How were your children removed?

I am glad your children were returned to you soon after although they want you to be supervised with them. They have also called a child protection conference to decide whether or not your children should go back onto a child protection plan.

To call a child protection conference, they must suspect your children have suffered significant harm and may be at an ongoing risk of harm.
Is this to do with your drinking at the party? Or is there something else they are concerned about?
You could ask to be assessed by a local drugs and alcohol resource. This would be independent from children services.
It seems you do not think your drinking is harmful to your children and that children services have got it wrong.
The alcohol support resource could assess this for you.

Also ask the social worker what you can do to satisfy them that your children are not at an ongoing risk. Ask when will the supervision of you stop.

Before the conference, you should get a report from the social worker which should explain what concerns they have about your parenting. This report will be circulated to the professionals (from school, police, and health-such as the health visitor, and children services) who will read it before the conference. So check that it is accurate and ask for any errors to be amended.

At the child protection conference the professionals will be sharing information about your children. So it is very important that you go as well. You can make sure the information is correct and so your views about your children and your parenting
You could ask children’s services about an advocate to support you in the conference or you could ask a solicitor to help you.
The conference will decide whether or not there should be a compulsory child protection plan. They can only make a plan if there is evidence that your children are at an "on-going risk" of suffering significant harm.

Have a look at our FAQ's and film about conferences.

If you have any questions or need further advice, please post back or call our advice line on 0808 801 0366.

Best wishes,


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