I find it almost unbelievable

  Forum Editor 23:01 03 Oct 13

that in 21st century Britain a mother can kill her own child by neglect, and nobody does anything to stop her.

As the Chief Executive of the NSPCC put it: "It appears Hamzah disappeared off the radar of his community and services, and a full picture of the horror that was his life emerged two years too late,"

The mother of this child repeatedly stopped Health visitors from seeing him. I would have thought that alone would ring big alarm bells with any sensible person. The point has been made that families have a right to privacy when it comes to bringing up their children, but surely this consideration should not override obvious warning signs?

  spuds 00:50 04 Oct 13

An investigation will take place, usually after a coroner's report, and from that, we will hear that "Lessons will be learned".

I am not usually convinced with statistics for being the whole truth, but this might make alarming reading click here worse thing about most of these type of cases, and that's nationwide, is that the people responsible of committing these types of crime are usually known to the authorities. And if neighbours try to step in, they are usually told to leave it to the authorities. Yet authorities, whether social services or the police, usually give a response of lack of resources, funding and even training, when challenged on these issues?.


  Kevscar1 05:38 04 Oct 13

When I was in the Police their was an offence called neglect of duty and you could be fired for it. It's about time it was introduced to a number of other proffession especially social workers

  fourm member 08:09 04 Oct 13

The sad reality is that nothing will ever stop this sort of tragedy happening.

This type of case always produces calls for social services to do more. If that were to happen, the chances of missing a serious problem would increase because resources would be so stretched.

Frustrating and annoying as it is, the only answer to 'Why wasn't this spotted?' is 'because it wasn't'.

  morddwyd 08:36 04 Oct 13

On the BBC News last night there was a comment that the UK's system of independent investigations into these matters is the envy of Europe.

The old saying "Practice makes perfect" springs to mind.

  john bunyan 08:47 04 Oct 13

It seems to be happening every 10 days - see ONS

I often wonder at the contrast between the investigation of people who wish to adopt versus the lack of investigation in so many of these tragic cases.

  spider9 09:04 04 Oct 13

In reality there can never be a system that will be 100% efficient for this kind of 'family' eventuality - unless we provide an unlimited budget and staffing to the officials, and that's never going to happen!!

Perhaps those who complain about Social Workers neglecting their duty might consider how they might cope with a large workload of families to check, when some of those 'customers' will be antagonistic and aggressive towards their visits anyway. Thankless task at times.

Very sad, but these things will happen, human nature is not always what we would like it to be, and there will always be terrible cases that fall through the net.

  spuds 09:53 04 Oct 13

john bunyan - Thank you for re-posting the link, for some reason my link and paragraphs at 12.50AM didn't seem to work or display correctly (Server errors?).

One thing that is a disgrace, is the often 'inspection visits' by watchdogs, that unearth terrible failings, and usually lengthy reports are made. Yet even after 'improvements' have been recommended and made, the same thing seems to happen all over again, somewhere else. Look at the 'Baby P' case, and how the social services and those running the service defended their actions. Yet it would appear by that example, that it was more about defending a social service than protecting a child?.

  flycatcher1 10:35 04 Oct 13

My Daughter is the Head of a school in an area with a wide range of families including many military ones and we spoke about child care problems yesterday. Her school records every problem noticed with any child and co-ordinates the information with Social Workers and the Police. Sometimes she appears to spend more time on social care matters than she does in her Head Teacher work.

She is aghast that schools have failed to pick up some obvious signs of a problem notably the case when a child was searching for food in bins. Many problems are appreciated but the vital key is the close co-operation between all services.

Her last comment to me was, they say that "Lessons have been learned" but this is not true.

Social workers have a very difficult job, they are sometimes damned if they do and damned if they don't. Raise the standard, pay them more and sack the consistent failures could be the answer.

  Quickbeam 11:08 04 Oct 13

One of the most alarming details that I heard was that her doctor allowed him to be deregistered her without any apparent thought as to why the child had not been seen in months.

I think that one of the lessons that must be acted on from this inquiry, is that minors changing doctors must be registered as changing. That the old and new doctors must have a system of officially transferring the minor patient, and that the minor should be seen within a month of the transfer by the new doctor.

And that minors should be seen by a doctor or nurse at their registered practice at set periods to be defined.

  spuds 11:47 04 Oct 13


But are all school's playing there part in this, or is it just left to the individual school or teacher's to make decisions?.

A few months ago, there was a major concern with one of our local school's, and supposedly pupil confidentiality. In that particular case, the morning after pill was being provided to young pupils without parent's knowledge. When challenged, the head teacher and board of governor's said this was the right way, and the parent's,carer's of the child or even the Eduction Authority should not be informed, to protect the child?.

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