The Serious Case Review of Baby F (Types of Abuse (Physical- Physical…
The Serious Case Review of Baby F
Types of Abuse
Physical- Physical abuse is defined by NSPCC as 'deliberately hurting a child causing injuries such as bruises, broken bones, burns or cuts.' (2018)
Emotional- Emotional abuse is defined by the government document 'Working together to Safeguard Children' as 'The persistent emotional maltreatment of a child such as to cause severe and persistent adverse effects on the child’s emotional development.' (2018) This could also include forcing a child to watch or be a part of domestic violence.
Neglect- The persistent failure to meet a child's basic physical and/or physiological needs, likely to result in serious impairment of the child's health or development...' (Working Together to Safeguard Children, 2018)
Grooming- This is defined by the NSPCC (2018) as ‘When someone builds an emotional connection with a child to gain their trust for the purposes of sexual abuse, sexual exploitation or trafficking’. This can be done online or in person.
Child Sexual Assault- Child sexual assault is defined by the World Health Organisation as 'The involvement of a child in sexual activity that he or she does not fully comprehend, is unable to give informed consent to, or for which the child is not developmentally prepared and cannot give consent, or that violate the laws or social taboos of society.' FGM is also considered sexual abuse as it involves manipulating a child's genitals.
No social workers ever saw Baby F or his siblings.
The Mother was known to be a heroin addict and be involved with domestic abuse.
She has 3 other children, one of which lives with a relative and the other 2 were on child protection plans at the time of the incident.
Baby F was found submerged in the bath by his mother, due to the brain damage that he had he later died in September of the same year.
Baby F was found in the bath on Saturday 22nd August 2018 but an interim care order was due to be put in place 3 days later.
How to report safeguarding concerns
If a child discloses safeguarding concerns to you in a setting you must take what they have to say seriously, without saying anything suggestive. You must then write down what the child says as soon as possible, reassure the child that they have done the right thing in telling you and inform your settings safeguarding officer.
If you suspect a colleague of malpractice then you must follow the settings whistleblowing policy, this in most cases is where either the settings safeguarding officer is informed and it is made sure that the practitioner in question is not left alone with any children until the matter has been resolved
Reasons abuse may have occurred/ may not have been noticed.
However, as there was confusion between Harrow Council and Buckinghamshire Council over which was going to investigate the neglect allegations, nothing was done by either. The confusion was increased by Baby F’s Mother as she was continually claiming to be travelling to different places.
Because the two councils did not communicate with each other this meant that Baby F’s family did not get the support that they needed, meaning that the children went longer than needed without the correct health and dental care.
The Harrow Local Safeguarding Children Board have a ‘Pre-Birth Protocol’ that aid vulnerable mothers where there are safeguarding concerns surrounding the family- this should have been done in Baby F’s case as his older siblings already had Child Protection Plans in place.
Furthermore, the services could have prevented the children’s prolonged suffering by having any police visits followed up by a visit from the social worker as although the police may have established that the children were not in any immediate harm the social worker could have identified whether or not the Mother needed any further support.