Michael Gove’s advisor, Sir Martin Narey, believes that not enough children are taken into care. He also believes that only a very small minority of children are erroneously placed in care. However, those who follow the stories of child stealing by the state believe that the correct figures run into thousands.
Martin Narey advocates a change in the family courts system which would permit more ‘openness’ in that the judgements may be publicised but the lack of transparency and fairness in the courts will continue in secrecy, it seems.
Christopher Booker provides an example of a child in care pleading to return to her parents:
On the very day Sir Martin was being deferentially interviewed by the Today programme, I received two more handwritten letters, smuggled out to her family from her foster home, by a bright 13-year-old girl who has now, for quite ridiculous reasons, been in state care for more than two years.
In one she wrote: “I miss you sooo much and I love you even more, I’m so sad and I don’t want to live any more, I can’t take it any more, I have so many scars, I’m so scared, Daddy, please help me! I’m so sorry I’m so scared. I should be brave!” In the second letter she writes: “I’m so scared, my heart is shattered to pieces. I love you infinity itself, and miss you infinity itself.” This is an articulate, utterly distraught girl, who was never harmed by her family, who has been repeatedly ill-treated in foster care and who has been repeatedly refused her right under the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child to put her own case to a court.
Her story is just a tiny part of the reality of what goes on behind that wall of secrecy that our child-protection system has erected – way beyond anything it is authorised to do by Parliament – not to protect the children, but simply to protect itself. Lord Justice Munby’s guidelines will do not a jot or tittle to change it.
Creating rotten systems for children? Let’s make sure the island is not to be accused of this in the future. Chris Robertshaw, please instil some sanity into the present insane system in the department of social care.