Welcome to another week.
As the United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of the Child celebrates its 30th anniversary this year, the UN has decided to highlight the milestone with a campaign they have called Little Voices Big Impact.
The campaign runs today and includes a line-up of speakers in Geneva, who will be discussing the Convention and the state of child rights in 2019.
The UN are inviting people to pledge their support for child rights on Twitter, and as part of that campaign, we would like to ask children and young people to share their wishes about how they would like the UK government to protect their rights going forward. We invite families to share their thoughts too.
Any responses we receive before 2pm London Time will be made into a collage and shared with the UN, who have promised to feature tweets using their campaign hash tag #LittleVoicesBigImpact, and include the sentiments in their discussions.
If you’d like to take part, please leave your pledge or wish, along with your first name (or ‘anon’ if you would rather not be identified) and your age, on the Researching Reform website.
Rosalind Barton said:
Every child has the right to have contact with their family members, both parents, grandparents and extended family.
This is a right that should be an order
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UK Public law
Keep families together: Ban forced adoption.
Too many children are being removed.
Being poor, ill or vulnerable is not a good reason to permanently remove children.
UK Private Law
Yet the family courts then effectively force ‘families’ to stay together when domestic abuse or child sexual abuse is alleged and therefore allow the abuse to continue.
This makes no sense. #TimesUp⚖️
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The thinking that it is good policy to separate families to facilitate the wishes of the foster carer/special guardian/adopters is bizarre. Where possible children in care should have access to their blood relatives, for the child’s sake.
All those stony faced social workers who reject the pleas of families to keep in touch with their children should find another job, one where compassion is not a requirement. You cannot compartmentalise compassion, you either have it or you don’t.
I’m not surprised these kind of policies exist as there has always been black & white thinkers. Those that thought it was a good idea to beat the devils out of the mentally handicapped in the Asylums for example. Those who thought it was a good idea to ship kids in care out to foreign countries without checking how they fared. Hitler thought it was a good idea to gas the Jews. Policies were put in place but it was others who carried them out unchallenged.
We live in a different age now where existing policies should be challenged & changed quickly when found to be poorly thought out. It’s good to see changes are being implemented.
My wishes would be to ;
Keep the children within the family & children only going into care only as a last resort.
Social workers should work with the family for at least year before care proceedings. Any suggestions, recommendations, should be discussed openly & recorded.
Any family member who wishes to look after the child/children should be given that opportunity & supported to do so.
Free legal advice & assistance should be given to all families at the outset of investigations.
All meetings should be recorded. Written copies should be given of recordings.
Contact should be encouraged if a child goes into care & supported.
Forced adoptions should be banned.
Courts should be open & there should be free legal representation for all family members.
There should not be any conflicts of interests with solicitors/barristers/expert witnesses/judges.
There should be more than one judge who decides on the outcome. Alternative options should be utilised.
If a child goes into care, independent checks should be made to verify social worker statements concerning the voice of the child.
Facts not suppositions or assumptions should be used.
I’m sure there are more……most concern the workings of the system….they need to be rethought with the interests of the child in mind not the interests of those working within that system.
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Many thanks for your thoughtful comments. Please bear in mind that the UN’s campaign is about children, their rights and their needs, so any pledges submitted by adults should focus on demands from their perspective. With thanks.