Time for early years intervention?

Sep 7 • Featured • 744 Views • 8 Comments on Time for early years intervention?

We're in the process of adopting a rescue dog, which is not as easy as it sounds. Our home has to be vetted, there are reference checks to be made – everything you could wish for, in fact, to ensure the dog is happy in their new home.

I was speaking to someone recently who told me that you have to jump through similar hoops if you want to adopt a child – only of course, as you would expect, the process is far more stringent and takes a lot longer. In fact, even though she and her husband had a lot to offer, they became so disheartened by the whole thing that after two years they gave up, simply unable to bear any more heartache.

What a pity, then, that similar stringent checks aren't done on some prospective natural parents.

The two Doncaster boys who tortured their younger victims came from the worst possible background. The whole family is known to the police and social services, their elder siblings have already been in serious trouble. Their mother reportedly gave them cannabis to keep them quiet, their father gave them beatings. The only way to get attention in that family was to get into trouble. Hardly surprising, then, that these kids should grow up devoid of compassion, determined only to cause chaos, torture and maim.

Now Martin Narey, chief executive of the children's charity Barnado's, has called for early years intervention which would result in some children being taken away at birth.

It sounds so clinical. But the sad truth is that some parents view their children as a nuisance, or a commodity – or, as in the case of Karen Matthews, an opportunity to be exploited. Yes it's inconceivable to caring, loving parents like you and me, but that's the harsh reality. They are simply wired differently, and in my opinion should have to prove they can be responsible before they are even allowed to have access to their kids.

Removing those children at birth would stop this cycle of indifference and abuse – and give them a fighting chance of normal family life.

written by Liz Jarvis

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8 Responses to Time for early years intervention?

  1. Sharon Tish Tash Toys says:

    Good luck adopting your dog Liz, our 14 month old Gordon Setter Chilli chose us (!) last year at the Blue Cross here in Devon. Life with a crazy puppy is very hard work but worth it. We all adore him, here he is pictured with my little boy Alexander http://www.tishtashtoys.com/blog/?s=chilli in a blog article which funnily enough talks about my own thoughts on adopting children. Anyway enough of my rambles – I’ve added you to my blog links as you suggested, can you add me to yours to, or even give me a shout out in a blog article. All the best, Sharon

  2. Alison says:

    I couldn’t have put it better myself, I totally agree with you.

  3. samantha says:

    I have to agree in principle, but I imagine the practicality/morality issues to be an absolute minefield of problems. However, if a family is known to police and social workers to be a ‘problem’ and there is a pregnancy it should at least be followed up with constant checks, support and closely monitored as an ongoing concern. After all, a new addition to a family can bring out the best in the most heartless of criminals. That said, every child deserves the best possible start in life, so if that means removing a newborn from their family, then so be it.

  4. jane says:

    Great blog – I totally agree with Martin Narey – lets break the cycle of family disinterest and abuse – these parents dont know what family life is about – they probably never had a secure upbringing themselves and therefore have no hope of giving it to their offspring. Their children will suffer the consequences and so the cycle goes on – the damage only gets worse and worse in each generation – talk about nature and nuture – We think we are naturally compassionate and loving but actually like all wild animals humans are instinctively wild without role models and learnt kindness. Lets take children away from parents who do not have the ability or desire to nuture their babies with love and attention.

  5. Sarah says:

    Such a sad and shocking event, and once again the onus of repsonsibility was resting on the social services. Over worked? underpaid? calibre of people? Not enough people? Not enough power? Whatever the issues and failings are, they need to be addressed. Then as Samantha rightly says, those at risk can be stringently monitored from pregnancy onwards.

  6. sally says:

    It’s sounds like Brave New World to me. Where will it end? Will my kids be taken away because I am ALWAYS shouting at them? Where do you draw the line? You have to remember, kids love their parents unconditionally, no matter how awful they are (thank God). Is it really right to take them away just because somebody deems them ‘not good enough?’ I just can’t condone taking any child away from their mother at birth.

  7. jane says:

    We are not talking about taking any mothers child away – we are talking about adults who show no love or support for themselves, their pregnancy, other children they may have; they may have been involved in crime already, in drugs, all sorts …… taking a baby away at birth is far nicer than when they are toddlers or have been abused, misused, bullied, tortured, punched, pushed, shoved all thier lives. Those two little Doncaster boys have not been shown any love compassion in life – i bet their parents have no idea what they like or dislike what their favorite colour or toy was – all they have been shown is a lifestyle of hatred and violence – what have they got now – nothing – far better to have been given a life of hope and love . Who would you pity more – the baby taken away at birth and given a life or those poor soleless boys who now have no life ahead of them?

  8. Chris says:

    I competely agree with you Liz. I think that there will be some difficulities in implementing something such as this but why is it that (according to Martin Narey on the BBC this morning) not that long ago there were 4,500 UK children taken from irresponsible parents and last year only 120? Sadly I don’t believe it’s because there are fewer irresponsible parents in the UK.

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