UNISONActive is an unofficial blog produced by UNISON activists for UNISON activists. Bringing news, briefings and events from a progressive left perspective.

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Government must share responsibility for repeated child protection failures

The Rotherham child abuse inquiry is the latest in a long line of investigations which have undermined public confidence in child protection services. Government ministers past and present waste no time in apportioning blame and calling for heads (of anyone but themselves) to roll. Local failings by social services and police are undeniable but the blame also lies with central Government – those politicians responsible for cutting funding of council and NHS services including essential outreach support for young people in particular; those politicians who have slashed social security benefits, those politicians driving a public service reform agenda based on competition rather than cooperation, those politicians responsible for inadequate regulation and standards.
     Professor Ray Jones wrote presciently on this subject last year: ‘What about the remit and responsibilities of government itself, and of politicians in Parliament, for child protection? How well have they been doing? Many might think that their contribution has not always been helpful..... Allocating blame and shame may not be the most constructive activity, and maybe social workers are not the most appropriate target anyway’