Any instance of state sanctioned harm to a child is appalling. Any impunity must be replaced with full accountability. It beggars belief that liability can be evaded when after non-conensual child removal the state harms any child through its staff to whom it should do better not worse than its birth family.
Each time a judge rubber stamps a local authority request without proper scrutiny marks a failure by the judiciary too to respect established birth family life.
How many more tragedies will it take for judges to address their flawed tickbox approach which favours strangers and their selective blindness towards rampant local authority prejudice and antisocial work against capable birth family parents?
The terrible story of Elsie, a toddler killed by her adoptive father, has understandably caused outrage, but a deeper issue lies at the heart of this distressing case which suggests that the council who placed her could be to blame for her death.
Matthew Scully-Hicks, Elsie’s adoptive father, was jailed for life this week with a minimum term of 18 years for murdering the 18-month-old toddler.
Elsie’s biological family fought to take care of Elsie before she was eventually adopted. Her birth grandmother, Sian O’Brien, launched proceedings in the family court to become her legal guardian when she was two months old, but was turned down because social services said she would not be able to cope. Ms O’Brien was already looking after Elsie’s two teenage siblings, and felt that it would be best for the children if they were all together.
There is no indication from any media reports that…
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