Letter To Sir James Munby President of the Family Courts Royal Courts of Justice

Published On April 29, 2014 | By Children Screaming To Be Heard |

Letter To Sir James Munby President of the Family Courts Royal Courts of Justice

Sir James Munby
President of the Family Courts
Royal Courts of Justice
Strand
London
WC2 A2LL

10th October 2013

Dear Sir James,

I speak for all families from the grass roots who contact me to say that due to misinformation or information spin, their children have been removed from them, many forever, through adoption or because of social workers ‘suspending’ contact which is allowed to drift, despite families constantly requesting to be allowed to see them.
Grandparents who have tried to keep their grandchildren out of the care system, often spending considerable sums of money, have lost them on unsubstantiated claims too. On Appeal to the High Court they are rejected and referred back to the original Judge and in one case a High Court Judge admitted, “The Grandparents are not on a level playing field” and this was entered in his Judgement!

The fact is, neither parents nor grandparents are on a level playing field and this is borne out by the statistics of care applications being rejected by family courts. 0.27% in 2007, that’s only 27 in 10,000 with the child returning to their parents, or to extended family or the case was dropped! The law of averages would show a more favourable figure for the family. It was worse in 2011, there were 32,739 children involved in disposals of public law cases, including 31,515 orders made, 792 applications withdrawn, 350 orders of no order and 72 orders refused. Only 72 care orders refused out of 32,739 cases! 0.22% that’s 22 children in 10,000! What chance do parents/grandparents have in our hopelessly prejudiced family courts? These appalling statistics clearly show something is very wrong with the system that is rigged against families.

As more people are becoming aware they are beginning to voice and pen their shock, dismay and anger about their children being taken from them. There is a groundswell of opinion; people opposed to the secret court process and ever more members of the public are banding together in chorus with those families destroyed by the system. They are questioning how it can happen are intent on exposing and halting the injustices perpetrated against the vulnerable families affected by this unfair and heavily biased system.

http://davidgaleuk.wordpress.com/2013/04/18/david-gales-interim-report-on-the-protection-of-children-at-risk/
Whilst there are many children who need support from being abused, and those abusers are dealt with in criminal court, there are thousands of children taken on erroneous information in the family court, leaving behind broken families with no recourse.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/children_shealth/10149479/What-our-judges-forget-when-they-send-children-into-care.html Children exposed to abuse within the care system.

You will know you can never legislate against evil people as they exist in all walks of life. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-coventry-warwickshire-23528650

The example of Baby P and others is constantly used as a vehicle for social workers to remove even more children from homes than they would normally have taken yet the families have never perpetrated these kinds of acts! Removing children unjustly from their homes equally harms children but that harm is often carried into adulthood! But opponents of the system say that social workers are removing children to cover their own backs!

http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/2007/sloan-fostercare-study-0703.html#.UggFWmYlFXo.facebook

This also deflects away from the failings by professionals, especially social workers, but also police officers, doctors and teachers. Little has changed since you spoke out in 2008. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-511609/How-social-services-paid-bonuses-snatch-babies-adoption.html
The general public would be outraged if they realised the extent of the financial profiteering paid for by the public purse, made on the backs of these children that end up in care. http://www.intmensorg.com/legalaid.htm

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-coventry-warwickshire-23528650

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/238115/legal-aid-statistics-090913.pdf

I implore you to consider that all care proceedings should be evidence based rather than hear say, conjecture or opinion as a safeguard. I am sure you are aware other parties involved work to their own agenda. Our recommendation of recording what is actually said at pre court meetings, between a legal team, social services and families would aid in eliminating the possibility of removing children unnecessarily from loving homes.
Judges, when making a decision about the futures of the children, have other options but seem to focus on just two, freeing orders for adoption and long term foster care, simply because that is what social workers have recommended that in the care plan. Criticism is often levelled at Judges as it appears the tail is wagging the dog as Judges accept Social Worker and Expert recommendations without them having to prove anything, as noted by Professor Jane Ireland. LJ Thorpe in open court stated that taking a child was a very serious business as the parents were so prejudiced in subsequent proceedings that it was very difficult to obtain the return of a child.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-2114616/Family-courts-incompetent-highly-paid-called-experts-failing-
children.html

http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/politics/child-abuse-expert-charged-police-2058734

Great strides have been taken in America where family preservation is proving to be very successful. http://nccpr.info/ The Evidence is In: Foster Care vs. Keeping Families Together: The Definitive Studies NCCPR (National Coalition for Child Protection Reform.)

Many children now trapped in foster care would be far better off if they had remained with their own families even if those families got only the typical help (which tends to be little help, wrong help, or no help) commonly offered by child welfare agencies.

That’s the message from the 2 part study which became the subject of a front-page story in USA Today, yet despite being the largest ever study is ignored in the UK. Full details are found as follows:

http://www.mit.edu/~jjdoyle/fostercare_aer.pdf Child Protection and Child Outcomes: Measuring the Effects of Foster Care and looked at outcomes for more than 15,000 children. It compared foster children not to the general population but to comparably-maltreated children left in their own homes. The result: On measure after measure the children left in their own homes do better. In fact, it’s not even close. Children left in their own homes are far less likely to become pregnant as teenagers, far less likely to wind up in the juvenile justice system and far more likely to hold a job for at least three months than comparably maltreated children who were placed in foster care.

Child Protection and Adult Crime: Using Investigator Assignment to Estimate Causal Effects of Foster Care

http://www.mit.edu/~jjdoyle/doyle_jpe_aug08.pdf

One year later, the same researcher published another study, this time of 23,000 cases. Again he compared foster children to comparably-maltreated children left in their own homes. This time he looked at which children were more likely to be arrested as adults. Once again, the children left in their own homes fared better than the foster children.

I have also enclosed, for your perusal, our letter to Earl Listowel with suggestions to improve permanence for looked after children.

I applaud you for speaking out to help make family courts more transparent and look forward to seeing what other changes you will make to bring justice and benefit children and their families.
Yours Sincerely

Maggie Tuttle

Anne Holden Researcher
The silent witnesses
Here lies the truth.

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43 Responses to Letter To Sir James Munby President of the Family Courts Royal Courts of Justice

  1. Pingback: The vile UK and US Forced Adoption programme and the shocking outcomes | Apology Alliance Australia

  2. Pingback: Letter To Sir James Munby President of the Family Courts Royal Courts of Justice | fighting for the rights of childrens human rights

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