MASH team

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LKJ88
Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Aug 05, 2021 7:01 am

MASH team

Post by LKJ88 » Thu Aug 05, 2021 5:49 pm

I recently, completely out of the blue had a visit from the police (mash team). No action was taken I was informed that I needed more support. (Needless to say this never happened). I am a grandmother caring for young grandchildren.

I have been devastated but was assured it happened all the time and it was nothing to worry about. However as they began to let things slip like the term MASH team I began to look into things myself. As I read I realised I was considered an immediate and significant risk (red alert) to the children and that was also why I was not informed or asked to the meeting.

When the police came to my door they assured me it was nothing to worry about. This was the first lie as Social Services have since admitted they had come to remove the children. How can they get away with telling so many lies and why do they lie ?

I have become very depressed and do not sleep is it worth pursuing the truth ? I am going to apply to have the MASH documentation. Do you think it would be worth writing or asking to see the case manager (she is very patronising and superior.

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Suzie, FRG Adviser
Posts: 771
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 11:25 am

Re: MASH team

Post by Suzie, FRG Adviser » Thu Aug 19, 2021 12:27 pm

Dear LKJ88

Welcome to the kinship carers’ discussion board and thank you for your post. My name is Suzie and I am FRG’s online adviser. I am sorry that I have not been able to respond to your post sooner.

I can understand that you have had a very distressing and unexpected experience which has had a significant effect on you.
You are a grandmother caring for young grandchildren. You don’t say whether you are doing so by an arrangement with the children’s parent/s or whether you have parental responsibility under a court order. Whatever the legal status, you are doing a difficult job and there may be more support that you can access. You mentioned that lack of support was referenced but that no support has since been offered. Please do have a look at our kinship care pages including our advice sheets on support for kinship carers . You can also check to see if there is a kinship carers' support group in your area.

You were visited by the police because, I think, a referral was received by the local MASH team which suggested that the children may have been at risk or in need. The police are part of MASH, working alongside children’s services, health, education, and youth offending professionals. Were you given any information about who had contacted the MASH team about your care of the children or any specific details about the specific concerns raised? If not, then you should make sure you ask for this when requesting a record or speaking to the case manager, if you decide to do so.

The police are the only agency with the power (under section 46 of the Children Act 1989) to remove children from their carer without a court order or without the consent of a person with parental responsibility and to take them to a place of safety, if the children are in immediate danger. This is called police protection and the police should only exercise these powers when absolutely necessary and where there is no other option. I think that the police may have considered using these powers if they found the children to have been harmed or at immediate risk of harm when they visited but they were satisfied that the children were safe in your care when they checked.

It is concerning that since this visit, you haven’t been offered any support and it seems little has happened. Do have a look at our information on how children’s services work to help you make sense of the different processes and types of help available.

You want to try to establish why this happened and so are going to write in to request this information. That seems very reasonable. You can also speak to the case manager or their manager if necessary. But a written request is a good idea as it allows you to have a record of your enquiry. It is not clear if you are now having an assessment so do try to clarify this too.

Are you aware of how to get some support for yourself too as you say that you have become depressed and cannot sleep. Do you have someone in your family or your community that you can talk to? Your GP may be the best person to contact to begin with to discuss how you are feeling and there are lots of helplines available too.

I hope this helps.

If you would like to discuss your situation with an adviser please do call us on freephone 0808 8010366, between 9.30 am and 3.00 pm, Monday to Friday (except bank holidays) or post back with a further query.

Best wishes

Suzie

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