Infant removals key messages
In April 2023, Research in Practice, Pause and the Centre for Child and Family Justice Research jointly hosted a seminar based on work in the community of practice and funded by Segelman Trust. The programme was a broad-based appeal for developing targeted services for parents who have had children removed by the state, including contributions from researchers, practitioners, local leaders, and mothers with lived experience of such services.
Recordings of key messages from each of the presentations are available to watch below, together with a written summary of the research and testimonials.
Recorded key messages
Professor Karen Broadhurst (Lancaster University) presents key findings from the review she led which looked at outcomes of proceedings in England and Wales of the last ten years. The review describes the cohort of women most at risk of child removal as being young, on low income, and disproportionately care-experienced. She used this evidence to make the case for expanding services to support women at risk of or after child removal by the state.
Karina Graham (Involvement Assistant, Pause) interviewed two mothers with lived experience of targeted services, April and Stacy-Ann. They spoke about what impact the services made in their lives and why they think this support should be made available more widely.
Children’s services leaders from five local areas discuss what led them to commission a targeted service for parents, what persuades them to keep funding it, and the added value for the local system.
Shema Begum – Strategic Commissioning Manager, Camden
Laura Eden – Director of Safeguarding, Islington
Andrea Walters – Head of Service, Bradford
Julie Longworth – Director for Children and Families, Leeds
Rebecca Key - Director of Children’s Social Care and Principal Social Worker, Stockport
Kate Tilley (Director of Business Development, Pause) uses data from the Pause programme to think about what it costs local authorities to do nothing. She shows the significant projected cost savings over time when intensive services support women to make positive changes in their lives.
Claire Mason (Centre for Child and Family Justice Research) shares findings from the growing body of evidence on services for parents in this position. She argues that while the evidence has its limitations, services have widely improved wellbeing and stability for mothers and led to fewer recurrent proceedings. She sets out future priorities for data collection and analysis across services.