How come women get the blame for what men do?

Dear Editor

Regarding the two recent serious case reviews.

I refer to the cases of child AP and child AK.

I am absolutely furious to read that the director of children’s services and the cabinet member for children’s services have blamed the mothers for their children’s deaths. (“vulnerable women accepting new men in their lives,” was at the heart of both murder cases. Cllr. Fiona Baker).

I expect much deeper understanding from them both. It is well known that women who have been abused can be very vulnerable and can clutch at any hint of help and love that they come across. I have heard it likened to being very thirsty with only dirty puddles available to drink from. It is for the services to understand this vulnerability and to offer alternative and effective support.

It is profoundly unhelpful to the women and their remaining children for them to be “blamed” for what the men did. They are the only support the children have and they need to be built up not dragged down.

It is also a cheap trick to let the service off the hook. The interplay of good children’s centres, good early help and prevention, good social work, robust partnerships, would have prevented these dreadful and tragic cases.

This was an organisational failure and I suggest those responsible stand down immediately. This includes the leader of the Council.

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