Social Services and Families

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Joined: Tue Oct 08, 2013 1:36 pm

Social Services and Families

Postby D2875 » Tue Oct 08, 2013 2:43 pm

We're are after some advice re Social Services and our family.

Last week there was an altercation regarding myself and my partners 15yr old son, which has resulted in the police being involved and myself being arrested for questioning and being released on conditional bail (I received a black eye and punches to the head from him and numerous other bruises). My partner contacted social services yesterday to say that she didn't want him back in the house as we have suffered on and off with his manipulative behaviour and his total lack of respect for authority and for us and that he is just destroying everything. We have requested another social worker as the one who was involved last year wrote a report that didn't include anything about my step sons behaviour (he kicked a door in his mum face resulting in her having a black eye), and it was basically very negative towards us saying that we stop him from receiving counselling and that he was in danger from me (which is not the case on either of the kids).

From yesterdays phone call to Social Services, they were adamant that he would be returned to the family home yesterday even though my partner explained that he was not allowed back here due to my bail conditions. They were not listening. They also said that they needed to do an assessment on my step daughter and that my partner would need to sign a form to 'safeguard' the children. My partner has explained that they are not at risk, it is just him who is a danger to himself. The social worker has suggested to my partner that she is backing me who she has only been in a relationship with for 2 years than her son who she has known all his life. My partner again did say that she is not backing or putting me first and that the person she is trying to protect first and foremost is her daughter but again they are not listening. Instead all they have done is written a report (last year) and even though he is now looking after this case it appears he has made his mind up from that report. My step son is currently excluded from school and my partner asked if the Social worker had contacted the school for any information to which he replied no.

We have contacted the police who have advised not to let social services in and have given an incident no so that we can get an officer round if we need to. As it stands they did not turn up yesterday with him but we only found that out because again we contacted them. They are not telling us anything.

We are at a complete loss as to where we stand and what we do next? Should we just assume that SS will come and take my step daughter (I believe they cannot do anything without a court order) and that I will be asked to leave our home?

Please can you advise us ASAP as we feel were fighting a losing battle. We are trying to do all we can to keep our family together :(

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

Re: Social Services and Families

Postby Suzie, FRG Adviser » Wed Oct 09, 2013 1:25 pm

Hello D2875

Welcome to the discussion forum and thank you for your post. My name is Suzie and I am an adviser at Family Rights Group.

I’m sorry to read about the distressing situation that you and your partner are in.

I am not clear from your post where your partner’s son is currently staying. Was he also arrested when the police attended? Where did he go following the incident and where is he now? - is he staying with family/ friends or have Children’s Services accommodated him in local authority care (e.g. foster care)?

Children’s Services will be reluctant to accommodate your partner’s son and are likely to argue that this is not in his best interests. Your partner has parental responsibility for her son and is, therefore, expected to provide him with care and accommodation. Clearly, however, if this is not meeting his needs and is putting his sister at risk of harm, she is right to express this to Children’s Services and to request that he is accommodated.

I would advise that your partner puts her position in writing to Children’s Services. She should emphasise that her children are her priority but that her son is, sadly, beyond parental control. She is, therefore requesting that he is accommodated under section 20 of the Children Act. It would be helpful for your partner to be clear about what support or services she feels would assist in order to move towards the situation where her son could be rehabilitated to her care.

Children’s Services do have a responsibility to safeguard and protect children in their area. Given the recent incident, and the file they hold from last year, they will need to assess your family’s situation in order to establish what action they should take. It is completely usual for Children’s Services to assess all children in a household when they become involved and it seems appropriate that they should assess your partner’s daughter in relation to the impact that the current situation is having on her.

You are right that Children’s Services do not have the authority to remove a child from a parent without the consent of the parent or a court order. If they are significantly concerned about you in relation to the children, they might ask you to move out of the family home while assessments are carried out. They might, equally, ask your partner to sign a working agreement that she will not allow you to have unsupervised contact with the children, for example.

Neither you nor your partner can be forced to agree to the social worker’s requests and any working agreement would not be legally binding. Clearly, however, if your partner does not agree to follow the social worker’s advice, this may have serious implications in that they may then escalate the situation to a child protection conference or to legal planning if they feel this is necessary.

My advice at this time is that you and your partner try to co-operate with Children’s Services as much as possible. Emphasise that you are committed to the children’s best interests and that you are willing and able to engage with professionals to promote their welfare. It is reasonable to raise questions and concerns about professional’s assessments, reports and plans but this should be done as constructively as possible, focussed on what is best for the children.

I hope this is a helpful start. Please do come back and let us know how things are going and if you have any further specific questions.

It may be helpful for you to read our advice sheet about child protection procedures. You are also welcome to call our free and confidential advice line (0808 801 0366) if you would like to speak to an adviser directly. The line is open 9.30am- 3pm, Monday to Friday.

Best Wishes

FRG Adviser

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Location: Nottinghamshire

Re: Social Services and Families

Postby coachkev » Fri Aug 01, 2014 10:40 pm

Are you saying that for what ever reason your not getting on with your partners son ,your wanting your partner to tell his son to leave because your falling out with him .You have been with your partner for two years, would you say he has been a good farther towards his son ?
All i ask is, for you to put yourself in the 15yr sons shoes & what as his past been like & wear his future is going,would you like to be there . Im only saying this because i was a **** when i was a kid & all i wanted was some one to talk about the positives ''job options to earn money'' not negatives ''your gunna be a deadhead doley''
Everything you have been throw is whats happening now,if you love your partner you have to welcome his children ,i get it ,its not easy to like someone you don't like ,but the best thing would be to show him everything hes done really asnt affected you .Sometimes doing something out of the usual reactions catchers people of guard ,its not what they was expecting which could get them thinking differently. Good look with your family Life
Think about what your going to do ,before you do it,,,simples

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