If ever there was a scandal which called for the full glare of publicity it is the highly secretive system which allows thousands of children to be sent for forced adoption, writes Christopher Booker.
By Christopher Booker
Published: 6:32PM BST 19 Jun 2010
Sir Bob Geldof who has attacked the UK?s ‘state-sanctioned kidnap’
On June 3, a 17-year-old Staffordshire girl, living with her parents and seven months pregnant, was horrified to receive a letter which began: “Dear Corrinne, I am the new allocated social worker for your unborn child. We have serious concerns about your ability to care for your unborn baby. We are so worried that we intend on going to Court to apply for an Order that will allow us to place your baby with alternative carers.” This so shocked the family that they raised what money they could and, like many others faced with similar threats, escaped abroad, where they now live in circumstances hardly conducive to a happy delivery of their new child.
Staffordshire social workers were also involved in the tragic case of Maureen Smith, the mother so desperate at the prospect of losing her two children that she fled to Spain, where she killed them before attempting suicide. As she wrote in her suicide note: “Social Services In Staffordshire and their policy of forced adoption are responsible for this.”
These are just two instances of the vast, long-running tragedy which Bob Geldof, launching a report last December on the “barbaric” chaos of our family law system, called “state-sanctioned kidnap”, whereby social workers, abetted by family courts and an army of complicit lawyers and “experts”, routinely snatch children from loving parents to feed the maw of the adoption and fostering industry.
Yet contrast this with last week’s report exonerating Kirklees social workers from any failings in the case of Shannon Matthews, the Yorkshire girl made subject, after years of neglect and ill-treatment, to a fake kidnap by her mother (described by local police as “pure evil”). Even though no fewer than 22 agencies had been involved with this dysfunctional family over many years, the report found that Shannon’s treatment did not justify taking her into care.
If ever there was a scandal which called for the full glare of publicity it is the highly secretive system which allows thousands of children to be sent for forced adoption, often on no proper pretext. Meanwhile the list of cases where social workers ignore all evidence in allowing the abuse of children to continue, grows ever longer.
It is not generally appreciated how adoption and fostering, organised by social workers, have become big business – quite apart from the fees charged by those lawyers and experts who are part of this corrupt system. Adoption payments and access to a wide range of benefits can provide carers with hundreds, even thousands of pounds a week. Still to be found on the internet (see the Forced Adoption website) is an advertisement by Slough Family Placement Services headed “Balloons and family fun to promote fostering”. This promised that Slough’s town square would be “bustling with activities including face painting and balloon modelling”, complete with a “David Beckham lookalike” (“bring a camera”), to launch “a new fostering allowance of £400 a week”.
I have recently reported the harassment and repeated arrests of Mauren Spalek, the devoted Cheshire mother whose two younger children were taken from her in 2006, and who faces trial on June 29 on a criminal charge of sending her son a birthday card. Last week it emerged, from an official register, what the occupation is of the woman who adopted her stolen children. She is a social worker.