Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Time to sort out Haringey children's services

From The Times website:

The Times has also learnt that Haringey Council, sharply criticised after the death of Victoria Climbie eight years ago, hampered the investigation into the death of Baby P by not handing over all their information to murder squad detectives.

It was only when the trial got to court and the judge requested that they provide all their evidence that police officers were able to see everything they had.

A senior source involved in the inquiry said: "The council came in with pages and pages of stuff that we had no idea existed and had never seen before."

Gordon Brown's response on this case at prime minister's questions today reminds us that he has a tin ear when it comes to anything but economics and I suspect their was a touch of the deep-grained Labour instinct to protect their own in their too. David Cameron's indignation was far more appropriate to the occasion.

Ed Balls has now announced yet another inquiry, but such inquiries have had remarkably similar findings going right back to the death of Dennis O'Neill in 1945. What is needed is the will to do something about the situation.

If the deaths of Victoria Climbie and Baby P. do not make the case for the government to go in and sort out children's services in Haringey, it is hard to see what could.


Anonymous said...

David Cameron's indignation comes from the fact that Brown,although wrong on the substantive issue, was right about what lay behind Cameron's line of questioning....he was 'playing politics' with it....

Jonathan Calder said...

How many scandals do there have to be in Haringey before those of us who believe they may have something to with the way the council is run are allowed to say so?

Anonymous said...


I dont think anybody is disputing the substance of something needs to be done. I even agree with you up to Gordon Browns 'tin ear'.

What I do question is David Cameron's motivation in all this...I watched PMQ's and feel, like Alix Mortimer on Lib Dem Voice, that his 'rage' had a synthetic quality.

Nick Clegg rightly criticised how this issue has become 'party political' was David Cameron that bears prime responsibility for making it so.

Jonathan Calder said...

Then I do not agree with Nick Clegg. I think this is a perfectly legitimate subject for party politics.

If we think Haringey's conduct has been shameful, we should say so.

Part of the problem with cases like this is the resounding clang with which professional and political ranks tend to close.

Anonymous said...

I do agree with Clegg. It's is legitmate to raise it as an issue, what it is not legitmate to do is raise it a way to overtly benefit your party which is what Cameron did and will do in the coming days and what the Tory blogsphere has been doing all day.

I feel we have and Lynne Featherstone raised the issue again later on....