The first section of a meeting with child R was to find out how he had been doing with the anger management techniques which I had taught him the week previously. Child R declared that the strategies he had learnt had been effective as they had helped him control his anger and prevented him from being involved in any negative incidents. The latter part of the session was an opportunity for child R to see an initial assessment I had conducted on his life. Child R had already given his consent, allowing me to discuss my finding with his parents, however, I wanted the child to confirm whether he agreed with what I had written, or if child R felt that alterations needed to be made beforehand.
When child R was initially informed about the purpose of the assessment, he was not concerned about sharing the outcome with his parents. Yet, although, child R did not give any indication anything was wrong, I became suspicious because his changes significantly contradicted with the comments he originally made. As child R had spoken with such passion, I knew that he was attempting to reverse the statement as something was making him apprehensive, but he would not admit to anything causing him concern. It was only after I took a different approach to query the amendments, that child R revealed the real reason for the shift in his opinions, and disclose that he was worried about any repercussions he might face on account of his parents seeing his written thoughts. Child R informed me that he had previously been subjected to physical abuse by his father. Thus, child R feared that the assessment would trigger another episode of violence towards him.
After child R’s revelation, I reminded him that I had a duty to re...
... middle of paper ...
...t is to keep an open mind to prevent any bias judgements. Additionally I am now aware of how easily cases of abuse can ‘slip through the net’. When the case is already know, the social worker has an awareness of what signs to look out for, but in a new case the social worker does not have that knowledge so can miss signals. However, I am going to attempt to use this learning to inform my future practice by always keeping the possibility of abuse in mind.
A further thing which I was unaware of was how all supportive services ‘step down’ when there is a section 47 investigation. This was a surprise as I thought that support should still be available to R, especially as he now needs someone who can discuss things with. However, although I felt it was unfair, I accept that I have to follow the procedures to prevent anything from influencing the ongoing investigation.
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