Is information being kept from the Baby P investigation?

The inspection ordered by Ed Balls following the death of Baby P is looking at the local authority, health services and police. I’ve received a tip off from someone working in one of these agencies about how the visit of the inspectors to their staff team had been handled.

The reason they rang me was that they were concerned that the inspectors were seemingly allowing this team to present the picture they wanted. The manager chose which staff would meet the inspects – and prepped them prior to the visit. No-one else was allowed to speak to the inspectors.

My caller felt passionately that the services were being allowed by the inspectors to manage the inspection so that staff who had voiced concerns in the past did not get to meet the inspectors.

I’ve raised this issue with Ed Balls, who assures me that his inspectors are excellent. Well, I hope so – but it doesn’t fully reassure me as so often in the past I’ve heard the excuse, “it’s all ok, we know what we’re doing” when that turns out not to be the case. So – let’s hope the inspectors are as good as said, but one to keep an eye on.

0 thoughts on “Is information being kept from the Baby P investigation?

  1. Surely it happens all the time on Labour Councils Lynne, like mine and yours. Another piece of Labour corruption.

  2. George Meehans belated apology is too little too late.Cllr Meehan says there are lessons to be learned Yes I agree the lesson are that he and his incompident Labour Councillors are not fit for office ,another child has lost his life as of the result of his useless Labour Leadership.Cllr Meehan has indicated to his colllegues he is standing down in May 2009 as council leader as he knows he will be wiped out in 2010 concil elections.Go now Mr Meehan you have been a disaster for the people of Haringey .Any of the councillors that back you on the 24 th November should be named and shamed,as they will be as guilty as you are.Cllr Meehan is quick to take his £60000 per year but take no form of responsibility.Shame on you

  3. As usual Haringey will conduct a cover up like the time of Victoria Clambie.Papers will be lost conviently offficers will have the fear of God put into them and a rosy picture will be made of this failing authority.The bottom line is that the Inspectors are to take everything they see and hear with a pintch of peverbial salt.There should be a confidence vote on the whole labour Group if they decide to save the Babbling George Meehan and the Hapless Liz Sangtry.

  4. The Baby P story made the headlines last week because of the convictions of his mother and her “lodgers” but the child actually died in August 2007. Obviously the case was sub judice in the interim but why on earth are both Haringey senior officers and Government ministers acting as if this is a bombshell which has just hit them? It is a measure of their incompetence and state of denial that they didn’t have clear statements ready, acknowledging problems and setting out what they proposed to do next. Given the Climbie history they must have known that this one wouldn’t blow over easily!

  5. I’ve raised this issue with Ed Balls, who assures me that his inspectors are excellent. QUOTEThis is so typical of the whole fiasco. When police raised the issue and were told about the ‘professionalism’ of Haringey social services dept. When the whole issue became public, Ms Shoesmith said never a word of apology, just insisted that her team had done nothing wrong and the medical people were to blame. Now an insider tells our MP that the process of enquiry is being ‘managed’, and Ed Balls doesn’t take the complaint on board but insists his inspector is ‘excellent’. When will they realize that saying something is so, doesn’t make it so. When important issues such as child protection are at stake, then glossing over information you don’t like to hear is what caused the problem in the first place.

  6. While I have a certain amount of sympathy for the work that Child Services do under very difficult and and emotionally straining conditions, it’s surely up to the leaders to take accountability for what happens on their watch. Resignations / sackings must follow.This is the sort of thing that undermines public confidence in local government and rightly creates anger which ultimately turns to apathy.

  7. with the longer-term aim of making a child’s own home a better quality one for it to return to if possible. I think we are, as a nation, squeamish about taking children away from their parents. But this is because the action is punitive rather than therapeutic.. Social work is emotionally demanding and produces considerable anxiety. Staff always talked about their cases to each other in my day (I left in 1985). This helped to clarify thoughts and plans on how to deal with problems as well as lowering stress levels. I think some study is in order to check out the effect of filling social work offices with computers which seem to take up an enormous amount of human relating time.Yesterday I heard a very sensible-sounding woman on Woman’s Hour talking about what they do in Holland. They take children away quickly from an abusing parent and then work with the parent(s). They also have strong views about preventing abusing parents from making more babies until they have shown they can be adequate parents to their abused one. She did not speak punitively, she spoke wisely and seriously and somehow I had faith that the Dutch would be better at the whole problem than us with our confused ideas about protecting the privacy (for that is what it is, in large part) of the family. Children may be raised in the privacy of a family but they live in a society and have to cope beyond their family. They become members of society and need to be healthy in body and mind. Society has a right to some form of inspection and judgement. But it could do this without the in-care experience being seen as so punitive, as it always feels (and felt when I was involved) here in Britain. We in Britain should be offering high quality Family Centres across the country and forms of protected care under a Care Order which should be seen as an offer of help to a parent and a protected and happy experience for a child in danger with the longer-term aim of making a child’s own home a better quality one for it to return to if possible. I think we are, as a nation, squeamish about taking children away from their parents. But this is because the action is punitive rather than therapeutic.

  8. I notice a vote of no confidence is to be moved in the Labour Leader Councillor George Meehan.The only problem is that Haringey officers have manipulated the Adjenda so that the motion of no confidence is right at the end of the meeting.Labour Councillors will be told by their whips to talk the meeting out so the motion will not be reached whereas these pathetic Labour Councillors will be exposed .The only real vote will be at the next Council Election in 2010 where we can hold these useless individuals to account.

  9. Cllr Meehan Go now for the sake of chidren .No more Lessons to be learned.Your Leadership is a danger to our children

  10. Hang your head in shame Cllr Meehan you are a inept Cllr who has been around in Haringey for a very long time achieving nothing. Your Legacy will be that your Leadership was at the helm at the time where two innocent chidren that your Council should of saved were allowed to die

  11. I am appalled at the amount of buck passing going on the Baby P case. Being an overworked social worker is not a valid excuse. Individuals both within the social service system as well as a member of this poor child’s own family have been reported to have knowledge of the abuse, yet no one stood up for this baby. We have already moved on to the merits of another investigation into procedures at Haringey Social Services, yet if the system was such a failure surely we would hear of similar failures in other councils who operate the same sorts of systems. The fact is that it was the procedures of Haringey Social Services that failed, including the staff involved. First and foremost all key people in Haringey Council should resign or be sacked – they are the ones with blood on their hands.

  12. I am not convinced that simplistic token resignations or sackings will make vulnerable babies’ lives any safer. A climate of fear stalking Social Services will probably not provide the right environment for making wise judgements for vulnerable babies. Hopefully an external report can judge whether or not the critical comments of insiders have identified the crucial mistakes. If many people shared/agreed the decisions to return Baby P to her mother partner and lodger then sacking one or all is probably not the best way forward. If one person was dominant and repeatedly rejected advice from Police and Doctors then an individual is responsible. Perhaps the advice of the previous enquiry was inadequate or.. whatever. We need to find out and be much clearer about what needs to be changed to improve the care for vulnerable babies.

  13. Mistakes were made and tragically a life was wasted.Where it could take upon itself to be, the world will never know.Nothing can be done to remedy that situation but i’m trusting you, personally, Lynne, to ensure that an eye is kept upon these services, that are so important and, for the most of the times, at best, excellent and to do whatever needs to be done to make them the very best of Europe.

  14. The Dutch system sounds like an interesting alternative to what we currently have.This “investigation” sounds like it will be a complete whitewash. It seems to me that it would be very convenient for Ed Balls and his boss if this story just quietly faded away. “No-one was to blame”, “terribly sorry” ,”but no individual or systematic failures” etc etc. We need a full independent enquiry to flush out the real truth. Of course the Doctor that refused to examine the child should be struck off, and I’d like to see some sackings (not redundancies or pay-offs) at the head of Haringey Council and down as far as is appropriate.Keep on pushing with this issue Lynne. Your compassion and understanding for how ordinary people feel about this issue is commendable. Don’t let the story just fade away, or be brushed aside. For the sake of poor Baby P, who should be a bouncing beautiful happy 2 year old now.