GLOBAL – Legally Kidnapped – Exposing CPS – CYFS – DCF – MSD – WINZ – SSS – Exposing the Child Protective Industry for what it really is.

Legally Kidnapped

 

The ‘Best Interests of the Child’ Concept – Misused from the Beginning – Men’s News DailyPosted: 28 Nov 2009 09:26 PM PST

The ‘Best Interests of the Child’ Concept – Misused from the Beginning – Men’s News Daily

Even the casual observer of family law and practice can be struck by the astonishing, er, flexibility of the term “best interests of the child.” For example, in 1995, a New Mexico court approved of the outright theft of a child by an adoption agency and his subsequent placement with an adoptive couple as in the “best interests of the child.”

 
 

Paedophiles continued as social workers because of watchdog failingsPosted: 28 Nov 2009 08:51 PM PST

Paedophiles continued as social workers because of watchdog failings

Social workers who abused children were left free to carry on working because of critical failings by the watchdog in charge of them, an inquiry has found.

 
 

Letters Submitted By Alison Stevens Alison Stevens Chairperson Parents Against InjusticePosted: 28 Nov 2009 11:23 AM PST

A Letter from PAIN, sent to the Chairmen of Doncaster Safeguarding Board Roger Thompson, with reference their failure to disclose information to the General Public, with reference to an Inquiry into their Departments failure into protecting vulnerable Children,resulting in Child Deaths.

For the attention of: – Roger Thompson, Chairperson of Doncaster Safeguarding Board.

Doncaster Safeguarding Children Board (DSCB)
PO Box 251
The Council House
College Road
Doncaster
DN1 3DA

Dear Mr Thompson,

I am writing to you with concern about today’s news that Doncaster Safeguarding Board will not be disclosing the contents of an inquiry into the death of Vulnerable Children for Public scrutiny.

Several Children have died in the area, which is obviously due to Social Services failings.

I feel that it is in the General Publics best interest to find out why and how the former was allowed to happen and to see if the recommendation from Lord Lamings inquiry has been disregarded in this case.

Such details could be made public, ensuring that the confidentiality of the Children is kept secure.

What have the Local Authority got to hide in this case?

There must be gross malpractice, with regards to various members of staff, thus the secrecy, and silence, of your Department.

I will be writing to my Local MP and Ed Balls, the Secretary of State for Children Schools, and Families to highlight our concerns.

Your Department has a duty, under the clause of Corporate Parent, to promote good practice, which in this case, has not happened, the only consolation out of this tragedy is that Ofsted are happy with the LA performance, at present, very little Justice for the children that have died, and are now statistics of Local Authority tragedies.

Yours Sincerely Alison Stevens Chairperson Parents Against Injustice.
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Home Office
!DJ !ff@!i 0 PI@/i)
II/J11 NOV2009/!;
……………………….—
———–
Meg Hillier MP
PARLIAMENTARYUNDERSECRETARYOF STATE
2 Marsham Street, London SW1P 4DF
http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk
David Burrowes, MP
House of Commons
LONDON
SW1A OM
1 2 NOV2009
Thank you for your letter of 30 September to Baroness Morgan at the Department for Children, Schools and Families, enclosing correspondence from your constituent, Alison Stevens, who is the chairperson of Parents Against Injustice (PAIN) regarding her concerns about the disclosure of allegations on Enhanced Disclosures from the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB). Your letter has been passed to me to reply.

I am grateful to you for raising this matter with me and I can fully appreciate Mrs Stevens’ concerns about the information released by the police. Although I am unable to influence police decision making in this regard, I will try and clarify the process behind the release of such information.

Firstly, I should explain that the role of the CRB is to act as the gateway to the Police National Computer (PNC) and associated data sources, and to reveal this information on the face of a Disclosure to Registered Bodies undertaking employment vetting decisions for relevant positions or employment as defined by the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act, 1974 (ROA) and associated Regulations. These are positions for which an employer may ask to see spent as well as unspent conviction information.

The CRB does not own criminal records information nor does it maintain a separate criminal records database. The Bureau relies upon access to the PNC for details of convictions, cautions, reprimands and final warnings for recordable offences and on local police forces for other information held about individuals.

As part of the Enhanced Disclosure process, the CRB must refer a person’s application details to any relevant police force for them to check against their local intelligence records for non-conviction information that may be considered relevant to the specific position for which the Disclosure is sought.

This sort of information is ref~rred to as “approved information” and is released under Section 113B (4) of Part V of the Police Act 1997, which states that: “Before issuing an enhanced criminal record certificate the Secretary of State shall request the chief officer of every relevant police force to provide any information which, in the chief officer’s opinion (a) might be relevant for the purpose described in the statement under subsection (2) [the positions eligible for Enhanced Disclosure] and (b) ought to be included in the certificate”.

Therefore, the police have a duty to disclose information which they believe may be relevant and should be disclosed. The decision as to what is disclosed is taken by the chief officer of the relevant local police force or his nominee.

Such decisions to release approved information are not taken lightly and chief officers operate to strict guidelines on what factors should be considered when considering such information. Factors that would be taken into consideration would include, but not be restricted to, the position the individual is currently applying for, the age of the information, whether the ~nformation might be directly relevant to the assessment of the person’s suitability to work with children and whether it is reasonable to disclose the information, bearing in mind the human rights of the individuals concerned.

Home Office guidance states that the main consideration must be the protection of the vulnerable and this is the main priority of the Disclosure Service.

The chief officer of each police force is Data Controller under the Data Protection Act 1998 of all information placed by that force on the Police National Computer (PNC) or retained in local force records. Only the chief officer has the power to amend or delete these records and the CRB and Home Office play no part in such decisions.

Saying that, the CRB has a procedure in place to allow recipients of such material to dispute the accuracy of the information revealed in a Disclosure; this is referred to as the Disputes procedure and details of how to commence dispute proceedings may be found on the reverse of the Disclosure document.

I appreciate that the inclusion of such information on a Disclosure may have a bearing on the recruitment decisions of potential employers but it should be remembered that the inclusion of approved information in accordance with the Police Act 1997 does not in itself prevent an individual from taking up or continuing employment.

Ultimately, it is for the employer to decide, after full pre-employment checks including the taking up of references and the careful monitoring of all the responses, whether an individual is suitable for a particular position.

As the applicant receives a copy of the same information that is released to the employer this should provide an opportunity to explain the circumstances surrounding any information released.

MEG HilLIER.

This letter is from Baroness Morgan, who stated that all teachers or Youth Leaders that had false allegations of Child Abuse made against them,and the allegations were unfounded the allegation would be removed from a enhanced CRB disclosure, with this in mind, i thought the same should pertain to any individual, that had been vindicated against such allegations.

I wrote to the Right Honorable Lady requesting a meeting with her, to highlight our concerns, of which she refused.

She contradicted herself, stating such allegations would remain on file, but a reference would be added to the file, stating all allegations were unfounded.

The former will still prevent innocent individuals ever working with children, even though they may have been acquitted by the Crown Court,and CPS,and Local Authorities deciding to take no action..

Persons are taking this trauma to an early grave.

PAIN won a case in August, within six weeks the Father had dropped dead, i was absolutely devastated..

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Data Protection – letter 1st request – Copy & paste to word
Delete Topic|Reply to Topic
Displaying the only post.
Post #1
You wroteon September 12, 2009 at 12:06pm
“INSERT YOUR ADDRESS HERE”

“INSERT NAME AND ADDRESS OF LOCAL AUTHORITY”

CC Information Commissioner’s Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF

“DATE”

Dear Sirs

Formal request for information held under the data protection act 1998

I am requesting information held about my children, family and me under section 7(1) C of the data protections act 1998.

This includes information relating to telephone conversations, meetings, supervised contact sessions and any other documentation that you hold, electronic, or any other medium, past, present or future.

I am aware that I am legally entitled to this information under the act and that you have a statutory 40 days to comply with my request.

I have sent a copy of this letter to the data protection act commissioner notifying them that made this legitimate request.

I look forward to receiving this information in due course.

Yours faithfully.
This is a PAIN Data Protection Letter, of which Parents have had success in obtaining their Social Services File.
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* My Notes
* Notes About Me
* Drafts

LETTER TO ROGER THOMPSON DONCASTER SA FAIL TO SHARE INQUIRY FINDINGS
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Yesterday at 10:10pm | Edit Note | Delete

For the attention of: – Roger Thompson, Chairperson of Doncaster Safeguarding Board.

Doncaster Safeguarding Children Board (DSCB)
PO Box 251
The Council House
College Road
Doncaster
DN1 3DA

Dear Mr Thompson,

I am writing to you with concern about today’s news that Doncaster Safeguarding Board will not be disclosing the contents of an inquiry into the death of Vulnerable Children for Public scrutiny.

Several Children have died in the area, which is obviously due to Social Services failings.

I feel that it is in the General Publics best interest to find out why and how the former was allowed to happen and to see if the recommendation from Lord Lamings inquiry has been disregarded in this case.

Such details could be made public, ensuring that the confidentiality of the Children is kept secure.

What have the Local Authority got to hide in this case?

There must be gross malpractice, with regards to various members of staff, thus the secrecy, and silence, of your Department.

I will be writing to my Local MP and Ed Balls, the Secretary of State for Children Schools, and Families to highlight our concerns.

Your Department has a duty, under the clause of Corporate Parent, to promote good practice, which in this case, has not happened, the only consolation out of this tragedy is that Ofsted are happy with the LA performance, at present, very little Justice for the children that have died, and are now statistics of Local Authority tragedies.

Yours Sincerely,

Alison Stevens

Chairperson Parents Against Injustice.
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Robert Johnson
Robert Johnson
I wish I could say that your letter will get anywhere but considering that our children were stolen away by the same said social services, and due to the fact that my complaint against the said social worker has thus far gone by the wayside without any subsequent action, it does lead one to believe that they will simply close ranks like they always… See More have done before and do nothing to resolve the complaint in your letter.

I think you may want to write to the complaints manager for Donny council, Janet McAlone, who may be able to help further.

Doncaster MBC have a lot to answer for.
Yesterday at 10:33pm · Delete
Alison Stevens
Alison Stevens
Thank you for that Robert.
Yesterday at 10:40pm · Delete
Robert Johnson
Robert Johnson
Anything that nails them to the nearest doorpost. They deserve to suffer for ignoring the requests of an eleven year old boy who wanted to stay at home. Especially Angela Briggs.
Yesterday at 11:01pm · Delete
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UNICEF LATEST
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Saturday, November 21, 2009 at 9:11pm | Edit Note | Delete
Nov. 20 day to highlight importance of children, UNICEF chief says
10:52, November 20, 2009
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Nov. 20 is the day for the world to focus on how it is treating its children, according to the head of the UN’s child welfare body.

November 20 marks the 20th anniversary of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) and highlights the importance of children.

“It’s an opportunity to talk about those critical issues that the convention stands for — the rights of children and the progress that the world is making in terms of what’s happening with children around the world,” said Ann M. Veneman, executive director of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in a recent interview with Xinhua.

Veneman said Nov. 20 was the opportunity to not just talk about children for one day but to stress the importance of investing in children every day.

It has been considered a day of worldwide fraternity and understanding between children all over the world, and to promote the protection, welfare and education of children, Veneman said.

IMPACT OF FINANCIAL CRISIS

Veneman is concerned about the potential impact the global financial crisis could have on the nutritional status of children.” Because a child who is undernourished under the age of two can have permanent cognitive damage, which means that throughout their lifetime, their ability to learn and earn will be impacted and this perpetuates the cycle of poverty,” she said.

“Clearly, we’re concerned about children who may be taken out of school to either beg on the streets or work in child labor because their family is financially in difficulty. But again, it depends on where the children are, how they are affected.”

Veneman stressed investment in health, education and child protection should not be reduced. “The investment in those kinds of services should remain solid and should not be decreased, particularly in a time when there is a financial economic slowdown.”

IMPACT OF CLIMATE CHANGE

The UNICEF chief also said the impact of climate change on children was a crucial issue.

“Climate change is increasing the severity and frequency of weather-related disasters. So we’ve seen more and more cyclones, extreme floods and this kind of thing,” she said.

“Often those who are most impacted are living in the flood plain zones so their houses and schools are destroyed.”

Veneman became UNICEF’s fifth executive director on May 1, 2005. Appointed by the UN secretary-general, the executive director works on behalf of the United Nations children’s agency to help children around the world survive and thrive by protecting their rights.

Since taking office, Veneman has traveled to more than 60 countries to review the plight of children and UNICEF’s work to assist them. She has the first-hand knowledge of how children’s lives are being saved and improved as a result of the assistance provided by UNICEF and its partners.

Veneman has witnessed the devastation caused by natural disasters, conflict, disease and exploitation.

“I just returned from the Philippines and saw the effects on poorer communities that are really in the flood plain,” she said. “It’s very important to see the impact of the weather-related disasters, the increase in frequency.”

In addition, drought caused by the climate change, as Veneman pointed out, was also threatening the food security and nutrition security in families and children.

70 percent of small holdings farmers in the developing world were women and so women were often influenced when droughts came, she explained.

“We must look at the interconnection of climate change, of children, of livelihoods, of communities and all of these things need to be looked at together in terms of the impact on vulnerable populations,” she said.

Founded in 1946, UNICEF is the only UN body dedicated exclusively to children and women. It is mandated to advocate for the rights of children.

CHILDREN IN ARMED CONFLICT

Children were also victims of armed conflicts in some countries, Veneman said.

“I just returned recently from my second trip to the Democratic Republic of Congo and, particularly in the east, the sexual violence is beyond what most people could ever imagine in terms of the horrible nature of it.”

“Women raped multiple times, even men raped, I mean, the worst kinds of acts you could imagine,” she said. “Many of these victims are truly under the age of 18 — they’re children.”

“Children are often caught up in the war, they might be abducted and become child soldiers or abducted and become the sexual slaves of soldiers.”

The director said it was crucial that the Security Council focus on crimes against children and that organizations like UNICEF be involved in reporting these kinds of violations to the Security Council each year.

On Sept. 30, the UN Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution to demand that all parties to armed conflict take immediate action to protect civilians, including women and children, from all forms of sexual violence, and urged all countries to take greater measures to combat this scourge.

PROGRESS MADE

Since adoption of the CRC in 1989, great progress has been made in various aspects related to children in the world.

Veneman said in some countries great progress has been made in reducing child mortality and making sure children had access to health facilities.

Progress had also been made in giving children rights to education and protecting children from trafficking, sexual exploitation and child labor, Veneman added.

But much more remained to be done in all these areas, she said.”Everyone needs to make a greater effort to ensure that the Convention on the Rights of the Child is really extended to all children everywhere, including those who are in the most difficultsituations and the most vulnerable.”
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EVERY CHILD MATTERS FROM THE BBC WEBSITE
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Saturday, November 21, 2009 at 9:02pm | Edit Note | Delete

By Richard Galpin
BBC News, St Petersburg

Svetlana Filipova and her husband
Police took away the Filipovas’ two sons, aged six and two, in May

The number of children around the world living without any parents or separated from their families has increased to 24 million with a third of them placed in orphanages, a leading British charity dealing with children’s rights has warned.

The warning from the charity EveryChild comes as events are held around the world marking the 20th anniversary of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.

The convention was designed to protect children from abuse and ensure they are able to grow up in a family environment.

But in its report EveryChild says research shows there has been a “substantial and growing number of children without parental care, with devastating impacts on children’s rights”.

One region of concern is the former Soviet Union, where it is estimated more than a million children are still living in institutions that EveryChild describes as “damaging”, even though the vast majority are not orphans. They still have at least one parent alive.

No action plan

In a Moscow news conference this week, Alexei Golovan, the child’s rights ombudsman for Russia, said his country now had more orphans than during Soviet times and warned that Russia was not fulfilling the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Alexei Golovan
The social services need to work with families when they start getting into difficulty so the families can sort themselves out and keep their children
Alexei Golovan
Russian child’s rights ombudsman

“There is no national plan of action here,” he said. “There should be a government strategy but there is not.”

In a grimy flat in St Petersburg, I met a couple who had recently lost both their children to an orphanage.

The mother, Svetlana Filipova, described how the police had taken away her two sons, aged six and two, in May.

She said they were taken because “I cannot walk and my husband does not work”.

But apart from disability and poverty, there may have been other factors involved in the decision, as she says her husband drinks heavily.

Even so she is desperate to get her children back.

“I feel that my children are crying,” she said. “I sleep very badly at night and when I wake up they are not there. I really miss them.”

She is convinced she would be able to look after them properly if the authorities agreed to let them out of the orphanage.

Volodya Filipova
Volodya, the Filipovas’ eldest son, had just returned from a talent contest

But she now has to go through a formal process of appeal and it is far from certain she will succeed.

On Thursday, she managed to meet her children at the orphanage for the first time since they were taken away six months ago.

Her eldest son, Volodya, had just returned from a talent contest which had brought many of the city’s so-called orphans together for a day of fun.

One of their guardians insisted the boys’ stay at the orphanage was only temporary “until the parents are ready to take them back”.

Russian and international experts say the authorities are far too keen to take children away from families in difficulty, with poverty often given as the official reason.

The experts have appealed to the authorities to do everything to keep families together.

“The social services need to work with families when they start getting into difficulty so the families can sort themselves out and keep their children,” said Alexei Golovan.

“Often here we only intervene when families have got into a complete crisis and then it’s easier to take the children away.”

There are signs that the government is trying to stop so many children entering orphanages and the figures have started coming down.

There seems to be recognition that putting children in institutions is harmful for their development.

Some 10% of children who have been in orphanages in Russia later commit suicide, according to EveryChild.

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Loving Mum
Loving Mum
A college official when commenting on their every child matters slogan said every child nutters.LOL

An ex surestart worker said every parent should be treated like a potential baby P parent. I said no. We should never demonise parents and become a parent hating nation. We are going to far the other way
November 21 at 11:16pm · Delete
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CORPORATE PARENT
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Saturday, November 21, 2009 at 7:10pm | Edit Note | Delete

Parents Against Injustice (PAIN)

Providing help and support to families when they need it most

children need their real parents

Corporate Parent

Do you know what the responsibility of your local County Councillor is within the child care arena?

Sadly, neither do they.

If a child is accommodated into care, then, the corporate parent is your locally elected County Councillor.

Make them earn the tax payers money and help.

Barry Aspinall, former councillor based in Essex, got no response to the efforts he made in assisting one of his constituents. So frustrated was he, that he took his case to the Guardian Newspaper using contacts provided by PAIN.

As a result of the article, Essex County Council tried to gag him with a court order. As Barry had not breached the Children’s Act Essex County Council were unsuccessful in silencing him.

However, more importantly, Essex County Council violated Barry’s role as the corporate parent.

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QUOTE LEGAL AID LAWYERS PAID LESS THAN SEWAGE WORKERS
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Friday, November 20, 2009 at 9:31pm | Edit Note | Delete
Legal aid lawyers paid less than sewage workers

Legal aid lawyers paid less than sewage workers
THURS 19/11/2009 – Solicitors are angry at new research that shows that practitioners who provide legal aid services are among the worst paid in the public sector according to a new survey.

The average salary of a legal aid solicitor is £25,000, less than a prison officer or sewage plant worker. It is also below police officers, nurses and secondary school teachers according to figures compiled by the Guardian newspaper.

The Law Society has expressed grave concern over the Ministry of Justice consultation paper, Legal Aid Funding Reforms, which proposes to further cut fees for legal aid.

Law Society Chief Executive Desmond Hudson said: “There is no scope left for cutting fees. These figures show that solicitors undertaking legal aid earn well below the average for professional salaries, and considering solicitors can amass significant student debts and work very long hours, the pay is very far from fat cat territory.

“Solicitors undertaking legal aid work show commitment to providing access to justice for those that need it most, and many more offer up a great deal of their time working for free with pro bono work for those who are ineligible for legal aid.”

The Law Society has warned that firms will no longer be able to undertake legal aid work, leading to the most vulnerable clients unable to obtain the assistance they need.
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20 years after UN pact to protect children, some successes alongside a long list of woes
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Friday, November 20, 2009 at 8:36pm | Edit Note | Delete
20 years after UN pact to protect children, some successes alongside a long list of woes

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS (CP) – 15 hours ago

The United Nations adopted the Convention on the Rights of the Child 20 years ago Friday, yet hundreds of millions of children still suffer from violence, hunger and disease. Associated Press correspondents around the globe interviewed children who illustrate the remaining challenges, along with some victories.

A Mexican boy bleeds and has backache from toting sacks of vegetables. In Sierra Leone a former child soldier is going to college. A Haitian child scrubs floors for a family that took her in. An 8-year-old German girl does her homework in a children’s home called the Ark. A South African boy of 5 is saved by AIDS drugs.

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti – Saintia Pierre was born in a country forged by a slave rebellion. But she is not free.

The round-faced girl is 15 now, and since age 6 she has lived as the captive of another family, forced to cook their food, scrub their floors, clean their clothes and look after children older than she. If she messes up, she gets beaten.

Saintia is a “restavek,” one of at least 172,000 children estimated by UNICEF to be living as servants in the Western Hemisphere’s poorest country. A 2003 census said about 3 per cent of Haiti’s children between the ages of 5 and 14 live in domestic servitude.

“Restavek,” from the French, is Creole for “stays with.” It is so shameful that most families keep their little servants hidden or introduce them as “little cousins” – and indeed some are the children of desperate relations.

The family that keeps Saintia makes no bones about her status.

“I wanted to send her back to her mother already because she’s at an age where she can get pregnant,” said Ernest Delice, a city councilman who makes money on the side selling pharmaceuticals and homemade wine. “But if she wants to stay we’ll help her the same as we do now.”

Saintia was born in the Haitian capital’s Cite Soleil slum, a notorious shantytown then dominated by powerful gangs and the drug trade. Her mother had at least seven children and gave them all away, according to Delice’s family.

She ended up with Delice’s relatively well off family in Cite Plus, a warren of concrete shacks along the garbage-piled banks of a sewage canal.

One recent day, Saintia was on her hands and knees, barefoot in a green plaid dress, scrubbing the concrete floor with a dirty rag and dirtier water. She made two trips down the street to fill a 20-litre (five-gallon) bucket of drinking water, which she carried back on her head.

Delice said he cares for the girl better than her mother could, giving her food and the equivalent of $15 a year to attend school about two hours a day.

But speaking privately in the room where she and some of Delice’s own children sleep on the floor, Saintia said she is not allowed to go out and play – and her dreams are ignored.

“They make me feel like I’m not part of the family,” she said. “When they do something for me, they remind me I don’t deserve it.”

By Jonathan M. Katz

BEIJING – Asked by a teacher to show her classmates how to write a character in Chinese class, 12-year-old Yu Chenchen scrapes a piece of chalk against the blackboard, but it snaps. Overhead, a chunk of white plaster falls from the ceiling, making the children laugh.

Conditions are lacking at the school in a Beijing suburb for about 500 children of migrant workers. Cotton blankets are draped over the classroom’s windows as buffers against the blistering winds of Beijing’s frigid winter, but without adequate heating, the children sniffle all the time and rub their hands together under their desks.

Millions of impoverished Chinese farmers have moved to prosperous cities to build skyscrapers or clean homes. Those who bring their children with them often find it difficult to pay for medical treatment and enrol them in decent schools because they are not registered residents. UNICEF says around 20 million migrant children live in Chinese cities, many invisible to authorities.

Chenchen almost never sees a doctor when she’s sick because medical fees are too expensive.

“If I have a cold, I wrap myself in many thick blankets,” Chenchen says. “I don’t want to burden my parents.”

Chenchen has attended five different schools in as many years since her parents first relocated from their hometown in central China to the capital city in search of work.

This year, Chenchen and her brother started attending a small, rundown private school for migrant children in Xiaxinpu, a village in Beijing’s outskirts. School fees are more than 1,000 yuan ($150) a year per child – a hefty portion of her parents’ 10,000 yuan ($1,500) annual earnings.

“Whenever I change schools I have to start over again. Once, I moved before finishing even half a semester,” said the fifth grader as she squatted in front of her 4-year-old brother during recess to wipe dirt off his face with a wad of toilet paper. “I wish I could just go to one school.”

Chenchen doesn’t complain. Her mother works as a maid and her father is a labourer, but the girl has dreams and sees education as the key to a better life.

“I love to eat, so I hope to be a nutritionist when I grow up,” Chenchen said, her round cheeks widening into a grin.

By Gillian Wong

MOSCOW – Tanya’s face lit up as she vroomed her toy jeep across the floor at Road to Home, a Moscow shelter for children. The 8-year-old tomboy was seized from abusive, alcoholic parents a month ago.

Just a few years ago, crowds of hungry kids were sleeping on Russian streets. Now that authorities have largely dealt with that problem, they focus on rescuing children like Tanya from broken homes.

“Four to five years ago we had real problems. Children were hiding with their families around the train stations,” said Maj. Yury Tverdyakov, deputy head of the police’s juvenile department at Kazansky Train Station in central Moscow.

“The government just started taking the problem really seriously, and you see the effects. Money has appeared, and we have the resources to do our job,” he said.

The rise in poverty as Russia botched the transition from communism to the free market in the early 1990s meant homeless children would harass tourists for handouts around Russia’s photogenic landmarks. Their numbers ballooned to more than 100,000 nationwide, according to conservative UNICEF estimates.

Jacqueline Gaskell, a UNICEF consultant, says the number of homeless children has fallen sharply due to government investment in institutions and shelters.

None could be found during recent searches of three central train stations, parks and subway stations – a big turnaround from the 1990s and a sign that the wealth Russia gained from record oil prices is having an effect.

Road to Home, which opened in 1992, was the first such shelter in Moscow. UNICEF now estimates around 2,000 children live on the streets in Moscow.

The 12 children’s’ shelters around Moscow are handsomely equipped, and staff outnumber the kids in most of them.

The Krasnoselsky Shelter has 60 long-term kids and a staff of 95 teachers, doctors, psychologists, cooks and security guards.

Human rights activists acknowledge the progress.

But they urge greater action in other areas to address issues such as the suicide rate among minors – eight times higher than the world average – and the 40,000 crimes against kids registered each year.

By David Nowak

CAIRO, Egypt – When Azza Radwan’s 10-year old daughter got circumcised, she bled for days.

“She was getting so sick so fast,” Radwan said. “I was losing my daughter.”

The girl survived and is now 12. But Radwan was so shocked she decided that her two younger daughters would not be “purified,” as female circumcision is called here.

Radwan, 43, represents a success story in the fight against female genital mutilation in Egypt, one of the countries where the practice is most pervasive. Some studies estimate that 96 per cent of married Egyptian women have undergone the procedure, in which parts of the genitalia are cut. The practice is also common in Yemen and parts of Africa.

Egypt’s Health Ministry in 2007 barred medical facilities from carrying out circumcisions, and there have been discussions about outlawing it completely.

Progress is slow. The most recent comprehensive study predicts that over the next decade, nearly two-thirds of Egyptian girls aged 9 and under will undergo mutilation.

Radwan remembers being circumcised when she was 8. “I kept running away from them but they’d catch up and force me down.”

She now considers herself an agent for informing others in the community what she has learned in health awareness classes sponsored by a women’s group.

“I take the things we learn and tell them to my friends,” she said. “But then, everyone is free to do what they want.”

By Hadeel al-Shalchi

MEXICO CITY – Leonardo Sanchez wakes before sunrise each day to head to his job at Mexico City’s sprawling La Merced market, where he packages herbs and vegetables.

The 12-year-old boy’s back aches from hauling the 10-pound (5-kilogram) bags from the bed of a pickup truck to his family’s stand. On an average day, he prepares up to 35 bags.

The leaves on the vegetables are sharp. “My hands sometimes bleed,” said Leonardo, sitting in the back of his family’s truck, wiping mud from a massive bunch of green onions before bagging them.

By 1 p.m., he has already worked eight hours, but he has no time to rest. The soft-spoken boy takes off his apron covering his car-racing T-shirt, rushes home for a quick shower and heads off to school. He returns home at 7 p.m., eats and falls into bed.

In Mexico, 3.6 million children aged 5 to 17 were engaged in labour in 2007, including 1.1 million children under 14, the legal minimum working age, according to UNICEF.

Leonardo is a third-generation child labourer. His father started working to help support his family before he reached puberty. So did his grandfather. Their toil has aided the family’s slow climb from deep poverty.

The grandfather lived in a shack in the central state of Tlaxcala before he moved his wife and five children to the city. He saved his money and bought a stand at the market, where his children worked. The family now owns a cinderblock home in Mexico City and a pickup truck.

Leonardo’s aunt, Socorro Sanchez, said she dropped out of school at 15 to work. Today, she picks up the day’s merchandise from distributors at 2 a.m. The boy meets her at the market three hours later.

“It’s a tough life,” said the aunt. “That’s why we want him to keep studying.”

Leonardo does not want to work at the market forever.

“Some day,” he said, “I would like to be a police officer or a firefighter.”

By Julie Watson

FREETOWN, Sierra Leone – Alhaji Babah Sawaneh’s commander ordered him to shoot at innocent civilians and chop off their limbs. He saw women raped repeatedly. He was only 11, a child soldier of one of West Africa’s most brutal civil wars.

Sawaneh was fetching water from a river with his brothers when rebels abducted him at gunpoint in 1997. They killed his uncle in front of him, and took the boy with them.

“I walked for 10 days, day and night, restlessly, killing, burning of houses, and amputation continuing by the rebels during the journey,” said Sawaneh, now 22.

The commander called them the SBU, the Small Boys Unit.

“When we were about to arrive in the village, my commander gave me a small machine-gun and instructed me to shoot directly into the village. He told me that if I refused he would kill me,” Sawaneh said.

“The commander himself started shooting toward the village and the villagers started running. I started shooting with my gun and 15 people were killed in the village, while some were also captured.

“My commander asked us to cut off their limbs and when I delayed to carry out the instruction, he warned me for the last time and called me ‘little rat.’ We cut off limbs of 10 civilians.”

In his second year with the rebels, Sawaneh began thinking about his parents and tried to escape. When he was caught, his commander flogged him with a machete. His back still bears the scars.

In January 2000, Sawaneh, then 13, was released with other child soldiers and put in a centre for former child combatants. The centre was unable to find his family.

More than 10,000 children younger than 15 were forced to fight in Sierra’s Leone’s 10-year civil war, according to UNICEF, and there are about 300,000 child soldiers around the world.

Sawaneh is now in his third year at the University of Sierra Leone, studying peace and conflict resolution.

“I would like to dedicate my knowledge to the advocacy against the use of children in armed conflict, which will help to promote peace and security in the world,” he said.

By Clarence Roy-Macaulay

BERLIN – Tabea pushes a strand of hair from her eyes and dips a piece of bread to mop up the thick, warm broth of a goulash.

The 8-year-old was thrilled to find her favourite dish in the noisy kitchen at Die Arche, or The Ark, where she and some 400 other children in Berlin’s Hellersdorf neighbourhood come each day after school to fill up on what they don’t have at home – supportive adults, activities and a hot meal.

“I’ve been coming here since I was 2,” she said. “All of my friends are here, my sisters used to come here.”

According to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, nearly every sixth child in Germany, or nearly 3 million, live below the poverty level or in a family with less than half the national income average.

While that is below the roughly 20 per cent of children the organization says are considered poor in the U.S., the number in Germany has been rising, despite relatively high government spending on education, social services and direct payments.

Children from impoverished homes struggle more in school. This can have long-term consequences in a system where pupils are tracked at age 10 into middle and senior high schools, determining whether they will attend university, technical or vocational secondary schools.

“I mostly do my homework at The Ark,” said Tabea, who had to repeat second grade. “All of my friends are here. I come here every day. It’s kind of like a home.”

Tabea lives in a high-rise, communist-era apartment with her parents and three of her four half-siblings.

Her two older sisters started coming to The Ark shortly after it opened in 2001. Back then there were 200 children, most of whom had been hanging on the streets.

That number has doubled in recent years, growing with the rise in child poverty.

By Melissa Eddy

JOHANNESBURG – The 5-year-old boy with a bright smile revealing a row of missing teeth wouldn’t be running around the playground if not for the drugs that have turned AIDS from a death sentence into a manageable disease.

He had been infected with HIV while in the womb. His mother died three years ago, leaving him and his brother in the care of their sister, just two years older than him.

There was little to eat beyond the occasional piece of bread scavenged from a neighbour.

Concern about the children – and the smell coming from their Soweto shack – led neighbours to contact Cotlands, an organization that cares for sick and vulnerable children.

“He couldn’t suck on a bottle. He couldn’t walk and he could hardly sit,” said social worker Kathy Hawthorn. “By the time we got there, their mother was terminal. The children never saw her again.”

The boy is not identified because AIDS is a stigma in South Africa.

Within months of going on AIDS drugs, he was sitting up and starting to walk.

“Now he is a healthy, happy, mischievous little 5-year-old who is going to go to school in a year’s time,” Hawthorn said.

About 5.7 million South Africans are living with HIV – the highest number of any country in the world.

Great progress has been made in getting treatment to millions of poor South Africans, but 1,000 still die every day from AIDS-related illness.

Hawthorn sees firsthand what the medicine can do. She began working with Cotlands 15 years ago when few drugs were available and children died daily. In the last year only one died.

“What we are seeing here, what treatment has done, is a miracle,” she said.

By Celean Jacobson

Copyright © 2009 The Canadian Press. All rights reserved.
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From CHILDREN AND YOUNG PEOPLE NOW, THIS GOVERMENT ARE SNOOPING EVERYWHERE GIVE THEM PROPER ARMOUR TO FIGHT WITH
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Friday, November 20, 2009 at 3:35pm | Edit Note | Delete

* SOCIAL CARE
* |
* HEALTH
* |
* EDUCATION
* |
* CHILDCARE & EARLY YEARS
* |
* YOUTH WORK
* |
* YOUTH JUSTICE
* |
* ADVICE & GUIDANCE

Government reveals measures to support service families
By Joe Lepper
Children & Young People Now
19 November 2009

The government has unveiled a package of measures to help the families of servicemen and women, including a review of their childcare and employment support.

Under the measures, announced by equality minister Harriet Harman and Defence Secretary Bob Ainsworth, the government will carry out a review of how well councils are supporting service families with childcare.
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An armed forces champion will also be appointed to each Jobcentre Plus district to offer specific support to families looking for work.

In addition, an Employment and Skills Taskforce, to be chaired by Work and Pensions Secretary Yvette Cooper, will be set up to examine service families’ access to jobs and training.

This latest package of measures follow on from last year’s Service Personnel Command Paper, which highlighted the need to improve service families’ access to childcare, education and work. A report on progress made since the publication of that paper is due to be released later today.

Harman said: “Our new initiatives will make sure that service families have the same access to childcare and school places as the civilian population; that employers recognise that moving from place to place is a part of service life, not a lack of commitment to jobs; and that we look at transport for remote bases so families can access training, work and childcare.”
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Another Letter from Baroness Morgan, relating to PAINS CRB Campaign..
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Thursday, November 19, 2009 at 9:32pm | Edit Note | Delete
Home Office
!DJ !ff@!i 0 PI@/i)
II/J11 NOV2009/!;
……………………….—
———–
Meg Hillier MP
PARLIAMENTARYUNDERSECRETARYOF STATE
2 Marsham Street, London SW1P 4DF
http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk
David Burrowes, MP
House of Commons
LONDON
SW1A OM
1 2 NOV2009
Thank you for your letter of 30 September to Baroness Morgan at the
Department for Children, Schools and Families, enclosing correspondence
from your constituent, Alison Stevens, who is the chairperson of Parents
Against Injustice (PAIN) regarding her concerns about the disclosure of
allegations on Enhanced Disclosures from the Criminal Records Bureau
(CRB). Your letter has been passed to me to reply.
I am grateful to you for raising this matter with me and I can fully appreciate
Mrs Stevens’ concerns about the information released by the police. Although
I am unable to influence police decision making in this regard, I will try and
clarify the process behind the release of such information.
Firstly, I should explain that the role of the CRB is to act as the gateway to the
Police National Computer (PNC) and associated data sources, and to reveal
this information on the face of a Disclosure to Registered Bodies undertaking
employment vetting decisions for relevant positions or employment as defined
by the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act, 1974 (ROA) and associated
Regulations. These are positions for which an employer may ask to see
spent as well as unspent conviction information.
The CRB does not own criminal records information nor does it maintain a
separate criminal records database. The Bureau relies upon access to the
PNC for details of convictions, cautions, reprimands and final warnings for
recordable offences and on local police forces for other information held about
individuals.
As part of the Enhanced Disclosure process, the CRB must refer a person’s
application details to any relevant police force for them to check against their
local intelligence records for non-conviction information that may be
considered relevant to the specific position for which the Disclosure is sought.
This sort of information is ref~rred to as “approved information” and is
released under Section 113B (4) of Part V of the Police Act 1997, which
states that: “Before issuing an enhanced criminal record certificate the
Secretary of State shall request the chief officer of every relevant police force
to provide any information which, in the chief officer’s opinion (a) might be
relevant for the purpose described in the statement under subsection (2) [the
positions eligible for Enhanced Disclosure] and (b) ought to be included in the
certificate”.
Therefore, the police have a duty to disclose information which they believe
may be relevant and should be disclosed. The decision as to what is
disclosed is taken by the chief officer of the relevant local police force or his
nominee.
Such decisions to release approved information are not taken lightly and chief
officers operate to strict guidelines on what factors should be considered
when considering such information. Factors that would be taken into
consideration would include, but not be restricted to, the position the individual
is currently applying for, the age of the information, whether the ~nformation
might be directly relevant to the assessment of the person’s suitability to work
with children and whether it is reasonable to disclose the information, bearing
in mind the human rights of the individuals concerned.
Home Office guidance states that the main consideration must be the
protection of the vulnerable and this is the main priority of the Disclosure
Service.
The chief officer of each police force is Data Controller under the Data
Protection Act 1998 of all information placed by that force on the Police
National Computer (PNC) or retained in local force records. Only the chief
officer has the power to amend or delete these records and the CRB and
Home Office play no part in such decisions.
Saying that, the CRB has a procedure in place to allow recipients of such
material to dispute the accuracy of the information revealed in a Disclosure;
this is referred to as the Disputes procedure and details of how to commence
dispute proceedings may be found on the reverse of the Disclosure
document.
I appreciate that the inclusion of such information on a Disclosure may have a
bearing on the recruitment decisions of potential employers but it should be
remembered that the inclusion of approved information in accordance with the
Police Act 1997 does not in itself prevent an individual from taking up or
continuing employment.
Ultimately, it is for the employer to decide, after full pre-employment checks
including the taking up of references and the careful monitoring of all the
responses, whether an individual is suitable for a particular position.
As the applicant receives a copy of the same information that is released to
the employer this should provide an opportunity to explain the circumstances
surrounding any information released.
MEG HilLIER
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Loving Mum
Loving Mum
was told if you werent charged for an offence or arrested it wouldnt come up on a crb enclosure. Alison does that mean if a parent has been through care proceedings that they wont pass an enhanced crb check. Its all so unfair and depressing.Keep up the good work.
November 20 at 10:30am · Delete
Alison Stevens
Alison Stevens
Had a meeting with jh a month ago.he said we would need all documentation and get the mps to take it through. The early day motions.
November 20 at 12:17pm · Delete
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DATA PROTECTION FOLLOW UP LETTER RE INFORMATION COMMISIONER LETTER
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Wednesday, November 18, 2009 at 9:20pm | Edit Note | Delete
“INSERT YOUR ADDRESS HERE”

“INSERT NAME AND ADDRESS OF LOCAL AUTHORITY”

CC Information Commissioner’s Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF

“DATE”

Dear Sirs

Formal request for information held under the data protection act 1998

I formally requested information held about my children, family and me under section 7(1) C of the data protections act 1998 on “INSERT DATE OF PREVIOUS LETTER”

This includes information relating to telephone conversations, meetings, supervised contact sessions and any other documentation that you hold, electronic, or any other medium, past, present or future.

I am aware that I am legally entitled to this information under the act and that you have a statutory 40 days to comply with my request.

To date I have not received this information and you are now in breach of the Data Protection Act 1998. Therefore please ensure you supply me with this information immediately.

I have sent a copy of this letter to the data protection act commissioner notifying them that you have failed comply with my legitimate request.

I look forward to receiving this information.

Yours faithfully.

This is another PAIN letter to send to the Information Commissioner, if the Local Authority fail to supply withi 40 days.
——————————————————————–
I am copying into you some advice notes on Case Conferences written up by an experienced campaigner. They may prove useful and hopefully enlightening you on the process. My best piece of advice in addition is to keep notes – ideally take a friend along as independent witness to the conference and definitely check the minutes of the meeting they take with your side’s notes as sometimes they will differ substantially:.

A Parents Guide to Child Protection Case Conferences. PAIN draft leaflet.

CASE CONFERENCES: Advice Note

1) You must have an invitation, delivered by hand.

2) Any questions you have should be able to be asked of the person giving you the invitation.

3) You are entitled to read any reports from social workers or other agencies before going into the conference. Days in advance should be demanded.

4) A list of all the people attending the conference is included with the invitation, if there is anyone on it you have problems with, tell the social worker, if your friend/supporter or solicitor is not on it, ask why.

5) Do not sit quietly on the sidelines, your future life is being determined by people who go home at night to a family, not concerned about how you feel.

6) Half an hour before going into the meeting, you will be invited to talk through, with the Chairman of the conference, how it all operates. Ask all the questions and do not let him or her think it will be just a rubber stamping exercise, it will be if you let it!

7) The perception to the outside world is given that these Social Services conferences are a means for parents to be heard and their views to be taken on board. The truth though is that the outcome and plan of action has probably been sorted out prior to you even being there.

8) Never allow your anger to get in the way of your determination to get a life back, channel all this aggression into supporting other members of your family who may be unable to see the light at the end of the tunnel. It may be dim but it is there!

9) Be firm and resolute, in your questions and do not be bullied by the Social Service members of the conference. They will not expect you to produce a counter report against theirs, so that might be worth doing, especially if you have a solicitor involved in producing it.

10) Stick to the old adage, give them an inch and they take a mile. The Social Services only use Case Conferences to prop up their belief that they are the only law of the land. When you pull them up, which you will, if you are determined to, the look of incomprehension on their faces makes you feel much better. The possibility that they may be wrong never enters their heads, probably because of all the other baggage they are carrying.

11) When the Social Services Case Conference ends, make sure you confirm when you will receive both the protection plan and the minutes, you can put complaints in if they are late or incorrect.

12) Most of the tools to use against the Social Services over zealousness and fabrication are easy to use and by costing them time and monies, will ultimately lead to the inquiries of the higher authorities.

13) Keep in mind that actually taking to court a Social Worker is almost impossible, so they have a lot of power. The only way to reduce this power is by showing them you will not stand for inaccurate reports; they have to attach your comments and concerns to all the documents put before conferences and court.

Acknowledgement to: http://www.legalsurvival.co.uk

Comments from PAIN

1. When you go to a case conference meeting, get a list of everyone who attends the meeting and their title and position. Get everyone’s contact details (address is usually good enough). Take notes of who says what during the meeting and preferably secretly record the meetings, but don’t disclose that you are recording the meeting and don’t disclose the recording in the future. The recording is your own personal record. You can use the recording to “top up” your notes. After the meeting, write a summary of what was said and send it to everyone checking to see that what your notes reflect are actually what they want you to understand. The law on recording conversations is so vague (which is good). There is no law stopping you from recording a conversation, but the laws tell you what you can and can’t do with the recording. It would be ideal to ask everyone for permission to record, but the answer is usually “no” so don’t bother asking.

2. If you treat the recording in a way that you would want to be treated if you were secretly recorded, you should be ok. In the same way that you wouldn’t want the recording distributed without permission, the people in the meeting feel the same way.

3. If you think that the decision made in the case conference was “unsound” you must appeal. Please contact us for further information if you wish to appeal.

 
 

Submitted by AnonymousPosted: 28 Nov 2009 11:04 AM PST

I am A U.S. Army Veteran of Both the Iraq and Afghanistan wars! I am A disabled Veteran! I just returned from Afghanistan on Sep 16, 2009! My children were taken from my wife by the Illinois department of children and family services while i was in Afghanistan! I cannot seem to get anywhere with the agency handling my case! I definitely feel like my rights are being violated! please help me!

 
 

Submitted by MarvinPosted: 28 Nov 2009 11:02 AM PST

I want to go home. Why did they take me away my dad never hurt me and I

 
 

Submitted by JenniferPosted: 28 Nov 2009 11:00 AM PST

Hi my name is jennifer and i have a 4 yr old little girl that had been beat at day care.

The night we took her to the hospital after being picked up. we called her with a peace officer standing their and her on speaker and she stated that she had spanked my child. know she left marks on her back that turned in to two week old brusies. but thats not the best part cps stepped in a few months back staten that my grandmother was to old to take care of her and she need to go to day care so she could socialize with other children. So we did as they wanted and moved on. now on oct 29,and early the 30 th 2009 my 2nd night mair came true. back in 2007 i lost a son a privet sitter and the state of texas let her walk away with murder. They told me to trust and i did and now my child has been beatin in a license state daycare. She told the cops that she couldnt find the paper work for that day when it happened, but the cops soon turned on us and started staten that we had some thing to do with it. we asked for a lie detector test and they refuse to give us one so we are having it done with our lawyer. i hope atleast?? They are trying to say her step father did it to her and im hidding it. that dont make no since that we was asking for the test and all the could care about is how a BLACK MAN CAN RAISE A WHITE CHILD!! simple cause he dont see color he sees his daughter. plz help us in this case to fight for us WE THE PEOPLE

 
 

Submitted by AnonymousPosted: 28 Nov 2009 10:58 AM PST

Every now and then I check the LK Submission Form. Here are a few for today.

In August 2008, five foster children were removed from my home without a court order and/or warrant. These children were removed for “serious safety issues in my home.

The children ages 4 to 8 were at daycamp or daycare and the youngest being 1.5 yrs of age was with my daughter and scheduled for adoption on the following Tuesday. A 2 yr old adopted in May of 2008 was not removed. Not being in state custody he was safe?! The 1.5 year old returned home 6 weeks later and adoption finalized in October 2008. The findings are unsubstainiated, but I do not want this in my file and have appealed the decision. Waiting for hearing in December. A year after this investigation, the local department sends me a letter they want to close my home. Of course I am appealing that issue as well.

Let me say it is my strong opinion, that a social worker became disturbed ahen learning I received our Local foster parent association bank account information from a 20 year non-active treasurer in order to get our association active and serving our families and children in care. Receiving this information the end of June.

Then these allegations pop up from a child who I had previously had in care 2 years ago.

Having an unblemished record and being an active member of the foster community this ordeal has been horrific. I will not sit back and let this happen, to me or anyone else. As we who have been struck with an allegation, we are gulity until we prove we are innocent, this costs thousands of dollars.

It boils down to this: Some Social Workers think they can manipulate, black list, whatever they want and get away with their unethical actions. Please know in Maryland, I will NOT stop talking until someone actually listens and steps up to address my concerns.

 
 

Attn: CPS Workers!!!!Posted: 28 Nov 2009 09:38 AM PST

Leonard from AFRA would like to do a survey.

Please click here and take it.

 
 

Mother taken to court for refusing to allow daughter to have swine flu vaccinationPosted: 28 Nov 2009 09:16 AM PST

Mother taken to court for refusing to allow daughter to have swine flu vaccination

The 44-year-old, a former international consultant, opted to take her daughter, 9, out of the immunisation programme run at her private school because she had reservations about the safety of the vaccine.

 
 

Prolonging foster care: The study that the CASA Puppets doesn’t want you to seePosted: 28 Nov 2009 07:39 AM PST

Prolonging foster care: The study CASA doesn’t want you to see

FOR YEARS, THE NATIONAL CASA ASSOCIATION BURIED A STUDY SHOWING THE PROGRAM IS A FAILURE DEEP IN ITS WEBSITE. NOW, IT SEEMS, IT’S GONE ALTOGETHER.

Note: Surprise Surprise.

 
 

Abuse report ignores failure of State to stop the horrorsPosted: 28 Nov 2009 07:27 AM PST

Abuse report ignores failure of State to stop the horrors

The main axis of public concern is missing from the report of the Murphy Commission. This is the tie-up between Church abnegation of responsibility for abuse in the Dublin diocese and the State’s awareness and response to this.

 
 

Sacramento Dad Arrested, Kids Found Safe in Parental AbductionPosted: 28 Nov 2009 06:54 AM PST

Sacramento Dad Arrested, Kids Found Safe in Parental Abduction

A Sacramento father who authorities say abducted his children during a supervised visit earlier this week was arrested Friday.

 
 

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