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If you have previously had a child removed, if you get pregnant again social services will need to be certain that you are able to look after this baby and will work with you to conduct an assessment and support you in getting any help you might need.Even if your social worker decides that you are not currently able to look after this baby, they need to have evidence to support this conclusion.
Furthermore, children are only adopted when it can be shown that it is in their best interest, and again, this decision is scrutinised by an independent guardian, as well as an adoption panel with a majority of members independent of the local authority, and by the court.We know that sometimes the working relationship between social workers and parents can break down.But always remember, even if you find your social worker difficult to work with, it is the court who makes the final decisions, not the social worker.This doesn’t mean that your social work doesn’t care about the impact this would have on you, but that they are obliged to put the child first and foremost. There are a number of reasons why plans might change, including if you can demonstrate that you are willing and able to make the necessary changes to address the concerns that led to adoption being considered as an option for your child.In England between 20, 9% of permanence plans (on average) moved away from adoption to another option, such as returning to a parent, residency with another family member or long term foster care.We have given an explanation of the key legal processes here.
We also examine the investigation and referral procedures here.
The rise in the numbers of young children coming into care may be explained by a variety of factors including a rise in parental substance misuse.
Whatever those reasons are, it is important to remember that children cannot be taken into care without legal procedures.
The British Association of Adoption and Fostering (BAAF) is another useful source of statistics.
There is no evidence that this is happening in the UK.
For further discussion, please see our post on Forced Adoption.