Sunday, May 19, 2019
Social Work Law
This assignment involves a grimace study where Ralph, a fourteen year old(a) boy, is currently in foster cargon be designer his mformer(a) Kerry, felt she was unable to control him due to his behaviour. However, Kerry has at a time expressed that she is unhappy with this foster placement and has requested that her son be returned to live with her and his dickens junior brothers. The scenario becomes more complex owing to the fact that Ralph has disclosed that his mother had regularly hit him with a go stick. In this essay I provide seek to consider the main practice issues raised by the scenario of the case study.Using the materials provided indoors the course along with my own nonrecreational experience, I will strategy relevant legislation whilst demonstrating the significance it has on the assessment and any subsequent intervention that may be beard in the given situation division 1 of the Children Act 1989 clearly states When a judgeship determines any question with respect to (a) the upbringing or a tiddler or (b) the administration of a childs property or the application of any income arising from it, the childs wellbeing sh only be the apostrophizes paramount consideration. s. 1(1) This reflects the kind work professionals prime concern. Bearing this in mind, as the social worker involved in this case study, I would initially expect to see whether any of the children involved were at imminent essay of of import suffering. The support and protection of children can non be achieved by a single agency. Every service has to play its part. All staff moldiness maintain fixed upon them the clear expectation that at that place primary responsibility is to the child and his or her family. (DH and Home Office, 2003, paras 17. 92-17. 93)The Children Act 2004 obliges all agencies that come into contact working with children must sh atomic number 18 information and work together to safety deviceguard the welfare of children. My primary ta sk would be to arrange a safeguarding strategy meeting. This would facilitate the sharing of information amid professionals whilst also determining the most appropriate course of action to take next. Those go toing the meeting would involve the area Child Protection Officer, an education professional (such as the appointed Child Protection teacher), the police, a health professional (such as the schooling nurse) and the social worker.Other agencies may also be asked to attend such as the youth offending team or CAMHS (Children and adolescent mental health service). At the meeting, the professionals will discuss the trounce response to the allegations and the extent of risk that is posed towards the three children involved. There are several different options that can be decided. After careful consideration and agreement, it might be the worldwide consensus that no further action is penuryed and the case will be subsequently dropped.However with this case study on that point is an allegation of physical yell which would suggest the family would be in call for of almostwhat kind of assistance, thus Ralph may be recognised as a child in need. character 17 of the Children Act 1989 states a child is in need if he/she is improbable to achieve or maintain a reasonable standard of health or development. s. 17 (a). Ralph has non been attending school regularly. Subsequently this will lead to him falling behind and not developing educationally. Ralph has also started to drink intoxicant and has also taken to staying out late, on unrivalled occasion not returning folk until the interest day.This behaviour obviously poses a risk to his health nevertheless, it could also lead to a risk of significant harm. The threshold to identify when a need becomes a risk can vary depending on the professional making that assessment. Choosing to bring professionals together to a strategy meeting will ensure that the threshold is one that is safe and appropriate. The a llegation from Ralph about his mother hitting him with a stick which was hard enough to cause severe bruising is without doubt a concerning factor. The strategy meeting would need to assess whether Ralph and/or his siblings were children in need (s 17) or whether there were rounds for a child protection enquiry. The Children Act 1989, element 47 states that the topical anesthetic Authority must investigate if it has reasonable cause to suspect that a child is suffering significant harm. This is also realizen as a section 47 enquiry. Ralph says he has been the victim of physical abuse and that this was a reoccurring act. As a social worker I would have to investigate this further. The questions I would requirement to find answers to would include Are Ralphs siblings at risk from experiencing similar physical abuse? Is Ralph at risk of suffering from physical abuse if he returns home to his mother?I would also want to look further into the causes behind Ralphs truancy and why he h as started to engage in anti-social behaviour. Could this be a result of a division in his relationship with his mother? Or are there problems with the home environment? When Ralph disclosed that his mother hit him with a stick, he said that he did not want anyone else to know. With this we encounter a conflict of what Ralph wishes and the professional duty of the worker. When working with young people it is chief(prenominal) to make sure that they are aware of and understand the agencys confidentiality policy.As a social worker I would explain to Ralph, within his level of understanding, that I will have to record some of the information he shares with me. However if he shares information that suggests that himself or someone else could be at risk of harm then this information will have to be shared appropriately and if required acted upon. As the social worker involved with this case, I would want to carry out an assessment before Ralph returns home to his Mother. However, Ralph is in foster care voluntarily which means that his mother can return him home as she wishes.Under section 20 of the Children Act 1989, any person who has parental responsibility for a child may at any time remove the child from accommodation provided by or on behalf of the Local Authority under this section s. 20 (8) . Nonetheless, section 20 would be the most desired option as it would be the least oppressive way to accommodate the young person magic spell the assessment takes place. This would require cooperation from Kerry, Ralphs mother. I would visit Kerry and try to explain the situation and the concerns that I and the other professionals had. This is credibly to have a evastating impact on Kerry so this must be done in a sensitive way. The local authority is under obligation to work in partnership with the families of children in need or at risk. Sections 22 and 61 of the Children Act 1989 require local authorities and instinctive organisations to consult, where reasonab ly possible, with the child and the parents before making any decision in relation to the child (Block 3, p103). out front considering keeping Ralph in foster care, I would want to explore other options of mansion. The case study does not mention Ralphs birth father or whether he currently has a relationship with him.This would need to be investigated. There may also be other relatives who might be in a position to look after Ralph, for example the possibility of living with Grandparents, Aunts and Uncles would be worth exploring. It may also be necessary to accommodate George and Dan while the assessment takes place. However, unlike Ralph, they go forth to have a relationship with their father, surface-to-air missile. Sam will have joint parental responsibility for George and Dan that as he is not the birth father for Ralph, he will not automatically have parental responsibility for him.However, he may obtain parental responsibility by obtaining an order from the court, or thro ugh a formal parental responsibility agreement with Kerry. Alternatively, Sam could apply for a residence order which settles the arrangements to be made as to the person with whom a child lives. There are two categories of applicant, those who can apply as of right and those who require leave of court (CA 1989, s. 8). As Ralph lived with his mother and Sam for six years, Sam could apply as of right. With all this said, a further initial assessment would need to be done on Sam prior to Ralph taking up residence with his step-father.Furthermore, it is very unlikely that Ralph would want to live with Sam, given his feelings that are stated in the case study. As with the parents being include in decision making in relation to the child, so must the child himself. As antecedently mentioned, the less oppressive option would be for Ralph to stay with a family member or to keep Ralph in his foster placement voluntarily. This would need to be with agreement from Kerry. However, in the event of Kerry not agreeing, there are other less favourable options to consider.The local authority may apply to the court for a section 31 or section 38 orders under the Children Act 1989. A section 31 court order can be given on the grounds that the child involved is suffering or likely to suffer significant harm due to the care being given to him, or likely to be given to him, or the child being beyond parental control s. 31(2). In Ralphs case I feel if a court order was required to accommodate him, a Section 38 would be more appropriate. An Interim care order (S. 38) granted by the court will give the local authority a period of time, for up to eight weeks, to investigate the childs circumstances s. 8(4) and (5). This would allow time to carry out an assessment on the necessarily of the family to identify if it is safe for Ralph to return home and to assess if there are any services that the family require to assist with the breakdown of the relationship. Before issuing a section 3 1 or 38 court order, the court must take into account some factors. Taking the childs welfare as the paramount consideration, there should be a presumption that there is no order unless making one would be expose for the child. This is also known as the no order principle.Both of these court orders also require a welfare checklist. The welfare checklist considers a range of factors before discharging an order including The wishes of the child any physical, excited and educational needs age, sex and any other characteristics that may be relevant any harm suffered or at risk of suffering and the capability of the parents at meeting the childs needs ACA 2002, s1 (40). As a social worker I will be striving to achieve the best possible outcomes for the children I work with.The white paper, Every Child Matters identifies five areas of outcome be health stay safe enjoy and achieve, make a positive contribution and achieve economic wellbeing. (DfES, 2004) To summate my hypothetical invol vement with this case study, as a social work professional working within social work legislation I would firstly take the welfare of the child or children as my primary consideration. When assessing the circumstances of the family and intervening in such a case, I would do so in a way that was anti-oppressive, which would mean using the least intrusive means of power available.It would require me to be non-judgemental, treating each individual with respect in line with article 8 of the European Convention of merciful Rights. I would ensure to work in a professional manner at all times, persistent by the GSCC code of practice (Codes of Practice, 2002). I would work closely with professionals, sharing information to those who need to know only. I would strive to achieve the best possible of the five outcomes for children and young people I would continuously adhere to lawful policies whilst continually reflecting and evaluating my own practice.