Sunday, 14 September 2008

Judge criticises social services over baby death

Full Article:

A judge has criticised failings in the North East social services system after a five-month-old baby was shaken to death by her father.
The authorities were aware that little Alisha Allen's parents were of limited intelligence and her father, Gary, struggled with anger management problems.
A Serious Case Review was launched after her death in January last year and a report will be published later.
Even before she was born, Alisha was on the "at risk" register because her mother, Claire Morton, was unable to cope.
The couple moved from Penshaw, Wearside, two miles to Bournmoor,County Durham, when their baby was two months old. That meant moving from Sunderland City Council's social services to those run by Durham County Council.
Judge David Hodson, sentencing at Newcastle Crown Court, said with the Serious Case Review under way, it was not his place to apportion blame on the authorities.
But he said there had been 'undoubted failings within two social services departments' which meant that the parents did not get as much help as they needed.

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