Recent statements in this category are shown below:
Statement Upheld Fostering 05-Nov-2019
Summary: Mr X complains the Council did not provide him with adequate information, prior to placing a child with him on an emergency foster placement. He says subsequent events have led to him losing his job and the matter has caused him considerable distress. The Council provided Mr X with enough information before placing the child but there was a one-month delay in providing him with the placement specific risk assessment. This is fault but the delay did not impact on the course of events. The Council has agreed to remind its staff of the need to provide foster carers with a comprehensive risk assessment at the start of an emergency placement and to document it has provided carers with this information.
Statement Not upheld Fostering 31-Oct-2019
Summary: Ms B complains the Council did not pay her a fostering allowance when she cared for a after a looked after child. This issue arose in 2015, but Ms B did not complain to the Council until 2019. Ms B's complaint is therefore late. We do not investigate such complaints unless we decide there are good reasons to do so. The Ombudsman has discontinued the investigation into Ms B's complaint because the complaint is late and there is no reason to exercise discretion.
Statement Not upheld Fostering 23-Sep-2019
Summary: Mr and Mrs X complained that an investigation into an allegation against them and their standards of care as foster carers was flawed because it was based on incorrect information. The Ombudsman finds that the Council's decisions were not affected by flaws in the investigation.
Statement Upheld Fostering 12-Sep-2019
Summary: Mrs X complained about the Council's refusal to pay her and her husband, Mr X, as kinship carers for Mr X's grandchildren. The Council was at fault as it did not recognise them as kinship carers, causing them a financial detriment. The Council acknowledged this through its complaints procedures, however it wrongly decided Mr and Mrs X were not entitled to payment for part of the period. The Council has agreed to pay Mr and Mrs X for the whole period it placed their grandchildren in their care. It has agreed to apologise and pay them £500 to recognise the time and trouble they have gone to and the frustration its faults have caused them.
Statement Not upheld Fostering 11-Sep-2019
Summary: Mr and Mrs W complained the Council failed to treat them appropriately as specialist carers rather than as foster carers. They said the Council failed to address their concerns. The contract they signed with the Council allowed flexibility of interpretation and the investigation has found no evidence of fault.
Statement Upheld Fostering 11-Sep-2019
Summary: Mr B complained about the Council's failure to recognise him and his partner as foster carers when a young person, C, stayed with them on a long-term basis. We find fault with the Council's decision-making process: it decided C lived with them as a private family arrangement, without any substantiating evidence of this agreement. It also delayed in formally considering the legal status of the arrangement. The Council has agreed to pay Mr B £750.
Statement Not upheld Fostering 27-Aug-2019
Summary: Mr and Mrs B complain the Council has not produced a report summarising the findings of its investigation into allegations made against them as foster parents. Mrs B is a social worker and is concerned it could impact on her future employment if the findings are not summarised clearly. The Ombudsman does not find fault.
Statement Not upheld Fostering 16-Aug-2019
Summary: the Council followed its procedures by holding a disruption meeting and referring Mr and Mrs F's case to the Fostering Panel following the breakdown of G's placement. The Independent Review Mechanism upheld the Council's decision to restrict Mr and Mrs F to short-term, holiday and respite placements. There was no fault by the Council.
Statement Not upheld Fostering 05-Aug-2019
Summary: there are no grounds for the Ombudsman to question the Council's decision to close Cromwell House, a respite centre for disabled children, for two nights each week. The Council is making plans in case B should need emergency respite in the future when the centre is closed. While the plans are not Mrs F's preferred option, there are no grounds for the Ombudsman to criticise them.
Statement Upheld Fostering 01-Aug-2019
Summary: Ms X complains about the actions and behaviours of children social services towards her and her foster child, Z. In particular, she complains the social worker did not listen to Z's wishes and feelings around contact arrangements. At this stage, the Ombudsman finds some fault with the Council. We have recommended the Council apologise to Ms X and Z, pay them a financial remedy, and to prepare an action plan to ensure the learning points from this complaint are implemented.