Privacy settings

LGO logogram

Review your privacy settings

Required cookies

These cookies enable the website to function properly. You can only disable these by changing your browser preferences, but this will affect how the website performs.

View required cookies

Analytical cookies

Google Analytics cookies help us improve the performance of the website by understanding how visitors use the site.
We recommend you set these 'ON'.

View analytical cookies

In using Google Analytics, we do not collect or store personal information that could identify you (for example your name or address). We do not allow Google to use or share our analytics data. Google has developed a tool to help you opt out of Google Analytics cookies.

Walsall Metropolitan Borough Council (12 017 037)

Category : Children's care services > Other

Decision : Upheld

Decision date : 24 Sep 2013

Summary

A complaint from a child aged 13 that the council failed to follow the law in attempting to move her from an out-of-area placement where she had lived since 2011.

The complaint

A complaint from a child aged 13 that the council failed to follow the law in attempting to move her from an out-of-area placement where she had lived since 2011.

The council decided to move the child in the summer of 2012 at short notice and without proper planning and in contravention of the requirements of statutory guidance to take account of the child's views and those of other interested parties. Even after apologising for its actions, the council continued to take active steps to move her.

Finding

The Ombudsman upheld the complaint and found fault causing injustice.

Recommendations

To remedy the injustice identified the council has agreed to:

  • hold £1,000 in trust for the complainant for up to three years, to be paid at her advocate's request;
  • review its policies and procedures for cases where it proposes to end placements to make sure these policies fully comply with statutory guidance relating to care planning and consultation; and
  • arrange training for social workers to ensure they understand and adhere to the requirements of statutory guidance relating to care planning and consultation.

The Ombudsman also recommends that the council apologises to the complainant for:

  • failing to progress her complaint or freeze the planned move when asked to do so by her advocate, the Ombudsman and the Office of the Children's Rights Director; and
  • the social worker's attempt to get her to sign an agreement to move.

Ombudsman satisfied with the council's response: 10 January 2014

Print this page