Editorial Comment: Untying the notts case

The most likely explanation for the initially “unlawful” removal of a newborn baby from his mother in Nottingham is either a miscommunication between social workers and hospital staff, a failure of professionals involved to follow formal child protection procedures, or both.

Contrary to what some press coverage may lead you to believe, the case does not however prove that the whole child protection system is in disarray or that all child protection social workers and health staff are incompetent. And neither does it demonstrate that social workers are willingly removing children from their parents to meet government adoption targets.

There are several facts about this case yet to make their way into the public domain and, if they do, there will be lessons to be learned. But there will also be a public record to be set straight – and it is up to the courts and the profession to ensure that it happens.

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Lauren Revans

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