Our friends at Project 17 have been speaking to some of the children who have been refused support by Children's Social Care (CSC) that they have worked with. Here are some of their responses.
Unfortunately, a lot of the practice that we have seen has lacked a child focus and concentrated too much on the means and resources of a parent. In some cases, we have seen an active intent to disprove a family's circumstance, as opposed to assessing the genuine needs of children.
We have had several cases this year alone where it has been suggested to children that they may be taken into care or taken somewhere else to live. In all of these, we have found no reason to even consider this, as the only issue the families have been facing is a lack of accommodation and financial resources.
It is critical that we are able to challenge poor practice, whether that is the result of structural, managerial or individual practitioner culture. Children's experiences with statutory social care should be needs focused and child led, with the rights of the child held paramount. They should leave having had positive experiences with professionals. They should not be writing about their experiences like this.
We will continue to work with our partners to demonstrate and lead in positive practice. We are committed to developing approaches and methods that are culturally sensitive and child focused, drawing on a wide, rights-based and child agency focused evidence base.