Welcome to another week.

Dino Nocivelli, a lawyer and partner at Leigh Day, a solicitors’ firm representing child abuse survivors and victims of abuse, has written a post on the firm’s website calling for criminal sentences to reflect the abuse of trust children and families experience when they are maltreated by social workers.

Families who have been abused, discriminated against and threatened by social workers have discussed the need for better criminal and civil penalties in recent years, to deal with the harm this behaviour causes and to ensure that the sector understands this kind of behaviour will not be tolerated.

Additionally, child protection cases published by England’s judiciary about social workers deliberately lying to the courts to engineer the removal of children from fit and loving parents show that offending social workers rarely face disciplinary action or jail time and highlight the urgent need to reform this area.

Dino mentions a series of cases where children were abused by social workers and calls on councils to voluntarily provide apologies to survivors and offer them therapeutic and financial support.

His post is reproduced in full below, and can be accessed on Leigh Day’s blog here:

A social worker should become involved in a child’s life when a child is suffering or is at risk of suffering harm and dependent on the level of this harm a child may need to be taken into care to be looked after.  This level of interference by the State into the life of a private individual is justified by the level of harm that is in place and the risk to a child’s life.

As in other areas of society however, wherever an adult has been given a position of trust and power, there is a risk that this position will be abused and sadly it is no different when it involves social workers.  
The most recent case involving child abuse by a social worker is Inderjit Kumar who was a social worker in Coventry.
Kumar has recently been convicted of three counts of indecent assault and two counts of cruelty to a child, and has received a seven-year prison sentence.  Setting aside the depravity of the actual assaults inflicted by Kumar, the fact that he abused his position of trust as a social worker when these children were so vulnerable and in need of care and support compounds the impact of the abuse on his victims.
Sadly, this is not an isolated event and below are some others who have abused children through their positions as social workers and recently been convicted of the same:
• Walsall – Moses Reid 
• Nuneaton – Robert Simms, 24-year prison sentence for rape and sexual assault
• Nottingham – Andris Logins, 20 year prison sentence for rape
• Nottingham – Myriam Bamkin, 2.5 year prison sentence for indecent assault 
• Nottingham – Dean Gathercole, 19-year prison sentence for rape and indecent assault 
• Cornwall – Chetin Hussyin, 14-year prison sentence for buggery and indecent assault 
• Hereford – Michelle Baxter, 26 months for sex with someone in her care
• Worcester – David Corrick, 13 years for buggery and sexual assault 
• Rochdale – James Peter Gavin, 17-year prison sentence for child abuse 
It is important that that all survivors of abuse feel able to disclose their abuse and that social workers who abuse should receive an increased criminal punishment for abusing their position of trust. 
I hope that councils will voluntarily step up to provide substantive apologies to the survivors and to also offer therapeutic and financial support although from my experience this does not happen. Instead it is left to survivors to try and deal with the impact of the abuse and also of the council’s failings.