Making a meal of it

Myself and another legal rep were a little taken aback to be told recently that we were ‘making a meal of it’, ‘it’ being the alleged assaults by a father upon his children by blows to the head. Not – apparently – a child protection concern because the kids, now just in double digits, don’t present as frightened. Well – ok then. This gem was from the social worker involved with the children. I say ‘case’ – there is no social work file – as said social worker has closed it. However the legal case runs on. And we sort of thought maybe, just maybe, the judge would be a bit interested in ‘it’ and might require a bit of disclosure so we could decide if it was necessary to hear evidence about the alleged assaults (social work view: ur…what for?). Pesky lawyers, what do we know about risk? Sticking our oars in and upsetting the apple cart. Clearly not every social worker has got Baby P paranoia.

2 thoughts on “Making a meal of it

  1. Too many maybes to comment properly, but just maybe the Social worker has seen too many false allegations to see any truth in this one.

    Maybe they are not as caught up in the ‘Baby P Frenzy’ that some others are.

    I would say that 90% of men I have spoken to have been accused of alcoholism, aggression, violence and drugs. Not one of those has ever resulted in anything other than long delays in seeing their children properly.

    In fact, only one of hose was found ‘guilty’ in a finding of fact hearing because when asked why his ex-partner had a red finger (She accused him of twisting it back), he said he didn’t know and the judge decided it must be true. He is still in a Contact Centre after nearly 2 years.

    Of course, I am sure in your case he is bang to rights and guilty as sin, but then opposing barristers tend to think that in my experience.

    When the Social Worker says its true you have a field day. When they say its not true you think they are wrong and useless at their jobs. So thats your opinion against a Social Worker and a Judge.

    Maybe step back a bit and look through less ‘Baby P Frenzied’ eyes.


    • The social worker did not think the allegations were false. In point of fact he stated he believed the allegations along with the police. My point was that it raised a serious issue that ought to be considered by a judge. I don’t seek to pit my opinion against social worker or judge, I simply sought (as did the other party’s representative) a proper judicial exploration of untested allegations. I don’t suggest social workers should all be overcautious – one real danger of Baby P is overprotection, but the attitude displayed was all the more striking at this point in time when so many social services departments are treading extraordinarily carefully.

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