Education Committee - Children first: the child protection system in EnglandWritten evidence submitted by False Allegations Support Organisation

Addressing the following points:

Whether the child protection system allows for effective identification of, and early help to, children at risk of different forms of abuse and exploitation (including, but not restricted to neglect, sexual and physical abuse, forced marriage, female genitalia mutilation, child trafficking and online exploitation) missing exploitation of children by their pornographic photographs on line) (child pornography)—those highlighted are dealt with by FASO, the only one missing is children being used as pawns when a British subject (usually male) marries a non-British subject (usually female), going into women’s refuge, then accuses British partner of child protection issues, or sex allegations or rape in order to get their own British passport and live of the state.

Responder—we are the False Allegations Support Organisation (UK) (FASO) is a voluntary organisation dedicated to providing support to anyone affected by a false allegation of abuse—FASO is a refuge for the innocent not a safe haven for abusers in denial. The information provided has been taken from our telephone helpline cases from all over the UK.

Funded by voluntary donations and run by volunteers since September 2001—Parliament has said FASO make a difference.

Factors affecting the quality of decision-making in referral and assessment, and variations across the country

1. Each area in both England and the rest of the UK is managed differently, and investigations of those accused on child protection issues are often flawed. Each area deal with child protection issues differently, so transferring areas there is new investigations and assumptions made of incorrect recorded information.

2. Investigations of the issues are not carried out thoroughly, but by inexperienced persons without the necessary qualifications and often lacks evidential fact and information. The new child protection teams (be it different counties or the same) use historical information which can often be incorrect, instead of current gathered information. Common sense is not often applied.

3. There is no allowance for incorrect information being repaired, which lead to inaccuracies to the detriment of both the child and the family for life (PTSD).

4. Looked after children are not addressed for investigations in a similar way as those parents not having had social services input in the past.

5. Inexperienced case workers and those without children are made to address family issues without the experience of maturity and experience of childhood development. Therefore making judgements they are not qualified to make.

6. Extreme pressure placed on social services by the media highlighting the cases of damaged children under social services care, impacts on newly reported child protection allegations, with detrimental effect compromising fair and just investigations to newly accused families.

7. Independent family specialists, parents own doctors and specialists already treating children, health care workers etc. ignored in meetings, here social services maintain their dominance; they do not follow correct procedures because they know they are unaccountable for their actions. Family judges rule on presentations in court and are not interested in factual and corroborated evidence, creating further problems for the family unit.

8. Removing children from families without full evidential facts is tantamount to the state abusing the child (ren) and does not protect child (ren) but escalates their fears and long term psychiatric effects. As has been, and will be shown In the children taken for the satanic abuse cases where fears override evidence, where lessons have never been learnt, such as Cleveland 25 years on and those making the mistakes never held to account.

9. Information for parents to be empowered in knowing how social services work, being provided with names of experienced recommended solicitors, all of which should be provided by social services and are provided by FASO and other groups such as Parents Against Injustice (PAIN) www.parentsagainstinjustice.org.uk, FASSIT www.fassit.co.uk, FASO also provide a support help line and we spoke with over 3,000 families in 2010 regarding child protection issues and false allegations of sex abuse/rape, calls having increased annually since 2001.

Appropriate thresholds for intervention, including arguments for and against removing children from their families

10. Intervention should only be made when full factual evidence, by investigation, has been carried out to include specialist reports (if this is the first indication of abuse) by both the local authority and independent reports by the family. To include the child’s history through their paediatrician and own doctor. All reports to be assessed in context by qualified persons provided by both family (legal aid) and local authority.

11. Children, when being assessed on child protection issues, should still have access to both parents, the person accused should not be made to leave the home. Nor the non-accused parent threatened with having their child (ren) taken from them if they continue to associate with the accused person (as happens, we are told, in many cases now). When the evidence and robust investigation proves that an abuse has taken place, only then should children be removed. In the case of both parents being accused Kin-care ship should be brought into place, where the kin-care is provided with foster care money for the keep the child.

12. If the child is placed in care of some description, the parent’s wishes on education/religion/ethnicity should be taken into account when placing the child in Temporary care.

13. Children newly born and in hospital (see www.aims.org.uk Maternity information on this issue)/or children in hospital, under medical investigation, can quite easily be monitored at the hospital and parents should not be removed, or the child removed from the parent—which traumatises all the family including the child for the rest of their lives. Nor should pressure be put on the families regarding child protection issues until the factual evidence suggest this is the case. (Also see 5% www.sbs5.diron.co.uk information/campaigner for parents on Baby shaking syndrome and brittle bones disease) also (www.parents-protecting-children.org.uk information on MSBP, Autism etc).

Whether the child protection policies and practices of non-social work agencies and Government Departments assist professionals to work together in the interests of the child

14. Professionals do not often work together from different departments in the interest of the child. For example, last night despite full factual written evidence over the past months a General practitioner of the family, having looked after the family for some years—mis-read a document, and instead of checking with the specialist author has taken a wrong assumption and reported the family as requiring child protection procedures. The child who has the problem has been taken from the family by social services, whilst leaving the older child with the parents. Both children are under four years. So no, professionals do not work together and certainly not for the child who needs its parent.

November 2011

Prepared 16th November 2012