Debate on how Cafcass can attract guardians back to the service

We asked for people’s views on how Cafcass (the Children
and Family Court Advisory Service) could persuade guardians who
have left the service to return.

A recent Community Care news analysis on Cafcass

These are the responses we received:

“I have been a self-employed children’s guardian for 10 years,
and have worked with children for 24 years. Although I am still
working as a guardian (only just), I feel that CAFCASS is not
interested in children’s rights or welfare – only in itself as an

The skills of experienced practitioners are devalued and the
management style is truly oppressive. Self employed guardians are
now treated as outsiders who appear not to fit in with the
organisation CAFCASS wishes to create. 

NAGALRO has campaigned hard for all children’s guardians –
employed or self employed. but it has not been listened to and its
advice disregarded. Why do I still continue as a children’s
guardian? Because I care passionately about children subject to
public law proceedings – the most disadvantaged children in our
society today – children who risk losing their parents, their
families and their home. I now ask myself how long can I associate
myself with CAFCASS – an organisation whose operation and
reputation is so tarnished.

Yasmin Hossain
Children’s Guardian,  North West

To get back experienced independent guardians
CAFCASS should;
Increase fees to a realistic “market” level (as paid to agency
Encourage rather than stifle professional independence,
Cut bureaucracy,
Scrap presciptive report templates,
Allocate work fairly.

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