Justice for Families, January 2008

Email John Hemming, MP
Justice for Families

January 2008.
Apologies for the short report (apart from Ali’s Media report) I am very busy at the moment. We have been making quite a bit of progress in this month. My personal priority has been to draft some proposed new clauses to open up further the Family Courts. The state has responded in part by offering more anonymous judgments. What is needed, however, is a facility for parents to give details of miscarriages of justice with the reports from the family courts even if they are redacted to remove the names of children.

I am currently in discussions with a number of political groups in parliament with a view to obtaining the widest support for these proposals.

I would like to find a way of challenging S31 of the 89 Act, but the Bill is structured in a manner that makes this impossible.

JFF internally continues to work to improve case support and identify more volunteers. Some interesting cases have now hit the Court of Appeal.

In terms of campaigning we hope to do some street theatre outside the RCJ. This will highlight the way in which newborn babies are removed from mothers on the basis of expensive unreliable “expert” opinion.

Alison’s Media Report for January
Thanks to Ali for this.

Wirral Council has paid £10,350 compensation to two foster carers for failing to support them after an emergency placement. The children were taken from their mother due to the common contriversal accusation of neglect. It does not say WHY.
http://www.communitycare.co.uk/Articles/2007/12/11/106737/wirral-council-pays-out-10000-to-foster-carers.html

When Tim and Gina Williams’ three children were taken into care, the Mirror described their story as “every parents’ nightmare”.
http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/topstories/2007/12/15/pain-of-social-work-sex-slur-family-89520-20253085/

The bodies of children who die suddenly are being illegally transported hundreds of miles to have a postmortem examination because there are only 40 qualified paediatric pathologists, it is revealed today.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2008/jan/04/health.publicservices

Angela Cannings. A very one sided view. after all this woman has been through and the obvious lack of support now she has to deal with this.
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/femail/article.html?in_article_id=506168&in_page_id=1879

A distraught mother told last night how her tiny daughter was taken away from her over Christmas after she was wrongly accused of baby-battering.
http://www.people.co.uk/news/tm_headline=torn-apart-for-christmas-by-social-workers%26method=full%26objectid=20276102%26siteid=93463-name_page.html6

The Government has ruled that judgments can go up online, but the press and public can no longer attend magistrates’ courts hearings.
http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/law/article3163222.ece

Academics claim that helping prisoners to become parents during their sentences will assist their rehabilitation, as well as respecting their human rights – and those of their partners – to raise a family.
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/news/news.html?in_article_id=508003&in_page_id=1770&ct=5

The GSCC has held 27 conduct cases, nine of which have involved allegations about inappropriate relationships between social workers and service users.
http://www.communitycare.co.uk/Articles/2008/01/11/106935/gscc-social-workers-need-code-on-sexual-boundaries.html

Keran and Iain Henderson were the ideal couple: he was a police officer and she a mother who loved children so much that she looked after them for a living. But, in a case that has terrible echoes of previous miscarriages of justice, Keran suddenly found herself accused of manslaughter, and the family’s nightmare began… As soon as the experts came out, the Crown Prosecution Service staff would thrust a blue form in their hands and say: “Get this signed and we’ll have you paid today.”
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/femail/article.html?in_article_id=509300&in_page_id=1879

Ayesha’s son, then eight months, was put in respite care with her parents for two weeks. Then the baby was placed with a foster family. Ayesha said: “I was devastated. I couldn’t believe they could take him from me when I was trying to do my best for him.
http://www.people.co.uk/news/tm_headline=don-t-lose-your-kids-like-i-did-britney%26method=full%26objectid=20291539%26siteid=93463-name_page.html20

A PREGNANT Northumberland woman who has fled the country to have her baby no longer has to answer to social services in the county. The 22-year-old, whose baby is due at any time, left the North-East after the social services ruling that her child would be taken from her 10 minutes after birth.
http://www.journallive.co.uk/north-east-news/todays-news/2008/01/15/county-council-ends-pursuit-of-mum-to-be-61634-20349820/

Sensitive details about victims of crime may have fallen into the wrong hands in yet another lost data bungle by Government officials.
Four computer discs containing confidential details of magistrates court cases are missing after being posted through the Royal Mail.
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/news/news.html?in_article_id=509817&in_page_id=1770

formerly the highest family court judge in England, is calling for children who offend to receive social work support or be dealt with by family courts, except in cases where the offence was serious.
http://www.communitycare.co.uk/Articles/2008/01/24/107053/butler-sloss-social-workers-must-have-bigger-role-in-youth-justice.html

It is a year since Jimi Ogunkoya’s two children were murdered by their mother, and five years since a report into the death of Victoria Climbié which was supposed to put an end to similar tragedies. Yet Ogunkoya claims that child welfare authorities failed his children while they were alive, and are continuing to do so by covering up the circumstances of their deaths.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk_news/story/0,,2247854,00.html

The ex-girlfriend of monster Ian Huntley has told friends she is overjoyed at the prospect of becoming a mum – just five years after helping Huntley lie about murdering 10-year-olds Holly Wells and Jessica Chapman
http://www.people.co.uk/news/tm_headline=exclusive-maxine-carr-pregnant%26method=full%26objectid=20299338%26siteid=93463-name_page.html2 7

An embarrassed police force has admitted that a group of children swooped on by officers and taken into care because it was feared they were smuggled into Britain from eastern Europe and forced into a life of crime were in fact living happily with their families.
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/news/news.html?in_article_id=510993&in_page_id=1770

WOMEN who were sexually abused as teenagers in a Coventry children’s home are launching a £1 million lawsuit against the city council.
http://iccoventry.icnetwork.co.uk/0100news/0100localnews/tm_headline=sex-abuse-women-sue-council&method=full&objectid=18791517&siteid=50003-name_page.htmlSex

A High Court judge today ordered a newborn baby taken from his teenage mother this morning to be immediately returned to her. The judge said that “on the face of it” social services officials acted unlawfully in requiring mother and child to be separated in hospital without first obtaining a court order.
http://www.childrenincare.com/breakingnews.html

Many of this months media stories are no longer available with their ULR. For more media stories please visit the justice for families media forum where the stories have been copied before becoming unavailable.
http://justiceforfamilies.freeforums.org/viewforum.php?f=8&topicdays=0&start=0

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