Category Archives: Tory

Should know better!

Today has been an important day for me, my two sons went to their new class today.  And for my oldest this meant an exciting day at a new school.  As I sat and listened to my wife as she shares the joy with me after she has left our son and the information session.  I receive a call from my manager.  I find that I have been invited to meet the director at the managers meeting.  Which I soon learn is actually the Cabinet member responsible for fighting on behalf of all Children Services.

As an experienced practitioner I will always say that there is nothing that can shock me! But Politics and logic still make me cough with surprise.  The meeting starts well as I sit with the other managers in the looked after side of our service.  Tell me about your job? tell me about the excuses you have in why you can not do this? BANG!!! excuse me? EXCUSES??? “Oh yes that is not a good word to use!” Reasons then! 

A good start from the cabinet member responsible for arguing on the behalf of all of Children Services.  Someone who can champion at a national level and local level for the improvement, and increased funding for all Children in our Local Authority.  Please, show some understanding of the difficulties that as practitioners and service providers that we have.  Please do not rely on news coverage of Baby Peter as a base line for all work being done with Children.

Tell me about all of the good work that you do with the young people? …..Well there is……Okay enough of that tell me about adoption? Sorry, did you not just ask about the good work we do? Yes well, I want to know about adoption.  

Its like sitting having a conversation with someone who is visiting from a different planet or maybe different time.  

To make it worse my favourite comment of the meeting was “isn’t is great that middle class families rescue working class children for fostering and adoption?”  Wow, this is a real problem where we are.  The majority population in our Authority are affluent people who are very successful.  They may not even see the hardships and daily challenges that the rest of the population deal with.  Their only understanding of Social Care issues is what they read in the news papers.  Therefore we are only able to recruit very few foster carers to meet the need.  So I am not really surprised by this comment, but I am angry! The value judgement that only the middle class can parent, that abuse and neglect only happens with working class people! No this is not true.

Her agenda to take back to the cabinet was yes everyone is doing a good job, we need more business support to help out – Yes, but more Social Workers is more important.  So do I feel confident about the future of Children Services – No.  And if this is a reflection of a Tory government do I feel confident – No.  The final parting words “I can not go back and bang on about Baby Peter as the cabinet switch off” really? are we still not learning from baby Peter and the mistakes made… maybe not

I guess all I can say is if you represent Children or any Vulnerable group, please please believe in it.  Challenge the status quo, make improvements but not cuts.  All Children will grow up; and will if we do our job properly pay back all that has been invested in to them through working.