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A Disturbing Look at The U.K.s "Nanny State"

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posted on Dec, 3 2009 @ 06:57 PM
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Originally posted by AlienChaser
I get the impression that your offence stems from the feeling that I intended to create a "we're better than you" mindset. This is not so, in any way. America has it's own police state issues, but this particular thread is not about them. It just so happens that a search revealed a mind boggling amount of nearly identical stories from women and families in the U.K.

Katie Hilperns investigative report on the issue highlights the increasing prevelance of this type of government intrusion.

You mentioned earlier that the U.K. is "probably the most socially developed and technologically integrated country on the planet". Which is precisely why attention should be called to such government involvement in freedom, or lack of choice of the people to have a private family life.


To be fair, you are kind of correct there.. thats the way it came off to me.. but im my defense.. most threads like this on this site seem to be of that nature and generalizing is possibly the most frustrating thing ever. Apologies.


As a poster mentioned above, the baby P case in England brought with it a massive public outcry for stricter Social intervention in regards suspicion of child abuse or mistreatment. If a situation like it happens again, then heads will roll from low level social workers to high level politicians.. so there is admittedly an over zealous approach to it at the moment but in reality, it is a tiny tiny number.

Also.. many of those stories were on the Sun and Star tabloids.. they should actually be disregarded in serious conversation as they are notorious.. not to mention being owned by the king of agenda himself, Murdoch. Whereas in most countries, these stories wouldn't be reported, the SUN/Star will - right beside the crop circle reports.


As I said, there are many things I don't agree with about the UK system but I don't live on a tiny Island with 60+ million so I can't sit here and judge their system.. especially when mine AND YOURS are almost identical in every way.

Its extremely possible that what you are viewing as a lack of freedom is an attempt police a monstrosity of industrialization & that there is currently no other way to do it. Obviously there are many little intrusions of privacy that seem ridiculous to us and hopefully they will be able to get rid of them.

And attention should be called but not by outsiders.. At the end of the day, most of you would get pissed off if a Brit was doing a thread like this about internal policies in the US while over generalizing.. I am advising on my neighbors and trying to iron out some problems I see with your OP







Troll.




Thanks.

Takes one to know one



[edit on 3/12/09 by Dermo]




posted on Dec, 3 2009 @ 07:30 PM
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I think people need to bear in mind that its only the negative stories that get the attention. You dont tend to hear about it when they do anything good.

Its horrible that children are being separated from their parents in such a way, but in the likelihood that a medium between the two extremes isnt reached, I'd rather see social services being too careful instead of more baby p cases.

Main thing I think needs changing is the speed of which these cases are dealt with. 3+ months might seem an acceptable length of time for other criminal cases to get to court, but when you've got children that amount of time means you are missing a significant part of their lives. Plus it isnt fair to just leave these kids in limbo while social services drag their feet

And as a bit of a silver lining (admittedly not much of one), at least there's plenty of people in this country who care enough to take these children in.



posted on Dec, 3 2009 @ 08:54 PM
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I'm really stunned by how much anger has been directed at the OP.

I can see how people might think it is a good idea to take kids out of homes where they are more likely to become obese, or where grandparents that can't get around might be unable to care for them. There could be some really good reasons (and details) for these moves. However, I urge that everyone take a look at the competence of the "professionals" you encounter each day -> in businesses and at your local gov't offices.

Would *you* want other people making decisions for your own children/family/friends/etc?

By the way, I can see where some people might be offended that OP suggested homosexuals adopting a child is automatically an inferior option to grandparents. Don't let that detract from the point that an overly intrusive gov't has rarely slowed or reversed overreaching programs.

Thanks for reading my thoughts and letting me share them!

ATS is AWESOME!



posted on Dec, 3 2009 @ 09:00 PM
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reply to post by Dermo
 


To be fair, you are kind of correct there.. thats the way it came off to me.. but im my defense.. most threads like this on this site seem to be of that nature and generalizing is possibly the most frustrating thing ever. Apologies.

No offence taken, after all it wouldn't be much of a discussion if I had said "This is the way I see it" and everyone simply agreed


Baby P. - I did some more research on this, and found that I was not fully aware of the intensity of the public reaction to this tragedy. Indeed it was a tragedy and the departments and individuals who, themselves, were negligent should be held accountable. I am weary of sweeping new policies that remove freedoms and rights in a knee-jerk reaction to tragedy. I'm American, remember?

Rupert Murdoch
agreed, but I found, and linked, enough other sources providing evidence of the situation. Anyone interested can easily find more on their own. I did not simply pick a story from the "weekly world news", and while you have not accused me of posting false information, it felt implied.


And attention should be called but not by outsiders..

This particularly bothers me!

Are we not all members of the ATS community?
Do we not all participate in threads regarding individual opinions on various situations, and the state of governments from all around the world?

To be told that I am somehow not qualified to make an observation in which I have not only linked to the things I mention, but have provided several avenues of exploration should anyone care to investigate on their own. Simply because of my geographic location, is rather arrogant don't you think?

This logic would imply that "outsiders" should not be commenting on the state of politics or on politicians in America.

The internet unites the world into a browser, and I have long held that ATS unites us in the sharing of opinions and ideas. I cannot say what it feels like to live in the U.K. (or Ireland) but can any of us say what it feels like to be a parent whose child was forcibly taken by the government, for such a trivial reason? My address has no effect on my consciousness of what is right and wrong.



posted on Dec, 3 2009 @ 10:40 PM
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Well, OP posted some constructivs things.

As i can see, most of the "negativ comments" typed by some angry persons are totaly out of context, i might say almost similar things could be wrote by uneducated individuals

For information, i witnessed the manners of the Social workers and yes, its turning into an Orwelian repressiv system


now stop debating over who is a troll or not, its not the point of the thread


[edit on 3-12-2009 by OTTOKARMA]

[edit on 3-12-2009 by OTTOKARMA]



posted on Dec, 4 2009 @ 03:47 AM
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Having now looked at a few more posts since the original OP, Alienchaser I apologise for calling you a Troll. I have seen recently far too many posts from American ATS members comparing US and UK healthcare systems and highlighting the badness in either to argue for and against Obama's proposed universal healthcare reforms and I thought that this thread might have been the case again, my bad, sorry.

As has been pointed out, the Baby P case and others recently have called for more aggressive responses from health/social care providers as the national mood called for it. The trouble is, you are dammed if you do and dammed if you dont.

As a UK nurse myself, I do know for a fact, that Doctors and Nurses in Accident and Emergency departments are under instructions to look out for signs of abuse in children when children are brought into the department. It is DoH/NHS policy to report any such cases wether it is actual or suspected to more learned colleagues within the multi-disciplinary health/social care team.



posted on Dec, 4 2009 @ 03:48 AM
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Op, i think you would have been more on target if you could have looked at what is happening inside the UK educatioal system and what is happening to most children in the UK rather than the sad incidents/overeation at times of the social services.

2002 CBBC article on School security
2004 version of the same article
2007 version of the same article

Note: CBBC keep refering to the tragic Dunblane incident in 1996 to justify the rehashing the article..

School Children to get ID cards
BBC Northern Ireland - School Children to get ID cards (Citizen cards) which will help prevent children buying underage products

Scottish children to get ID numbers
ChildrensBBC link about giving ID numbers to scottish children to trace and track them

unisex toilets to stop bullying
BBC Link on the expansion of unisex toilets in UK schools, some of these are open plan with frosted glass doors

Finger tip Scanning in Schools
ChildrenBBC link discussing if Fingertip scanning in Schools is a good idea

Security Cameras in Schools
ChildrensBBC link discussing if CCTV in schools a good idea, while more and more schools are putting CCTV in the toilets

Heres a CBBC teachers aid link on creating a unisex toy box

Now one the one hand you could say these are measures to keep school children safe, trace them if they get lost, balance out male and female role models as all good things that state should do, and others will question if these are not to prepare this future generate to accept CCTVs even in toilets, accept the need to carry ID cards and be happy to give out Biometric data when it is demanded by the state.

But I do not beleive the UK is alone in taking these steps either to protect or to prepare school children..

It does however raise interesting debates, if a school has an attendent in the toilet do you need security cameras too.. or if you have a swipe card to get into school, why do you need an ID card and fingertip scanning as well.

There is also the interesting disparity between how school children in school are treated and how adults in the work place are treated.. for the children these things are implemented without consent, where as in the workplace those things can only be implemented by consent.

So that begs the question, If we are so liberal, why do we not care about children views!

Another avenue could have been to look at how the State has expanded the right to fine to now include people like Security gaurds (bouncers and the like) and hospital attendants.. which again merits the debate who should be able to decide when someone has broken the law and should be fined..

Collection would also fall to a private company.. and begs the question, what happens to a legal system when private profit making businesses are given the right to hand out and collect fines.

This also flows into the nanny state question as it increases the scope of who can tell us what to do and how to behave under threat of punishment.

Again, I don't feel this is a UK only situation..



posted on Dec, 4 2009 @ 03:58 AM
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Another avenue could have been to look at how the State has expanded the right to fine to now include people like Security gaurds (bouncers and the like) and hospital attendants.. which again merits the debate who should be able to decide when someone has broken the law and should be fined..



My BOLD emphasis.

Can you enlighten me on where/how ??? Hospital attendants (whatever they may be) can fine people? I have not heard of this.



posted on Dec, 4 2009 @ 04:40 AM
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Originally posted by Wotan



Another avenue could have been to look at how the State has expanded the right to fine to now include people like Security gaurds (bouncers and the like) and hospital attendants.. which again merits the debate who should be able to decide when someone has broken the law and should be fined..



My BOLD emphasis.

Can you enlighten me on where/how ??? Hospital attendants (whatever they may be) can fine people? I have not heard of this.


Of course, here is a link to the main article covering the topic on the guardian's CIF which includes links to other articles...

www.guardian.co.uk...

I'll rephrase to hospital staff..



posted on Dec, 4 2009 @ 05:42 AM
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reply to post by thoughtsfull
 


I see, thankyou. I see that it is 'trained' security staff.

Having been on the recieving end of abuse (verbal and physical) by visitors and patients, I hope that this will be a deterrant to all that abuse/violence to staff will not be tolerated in any circumstance.

It is about time that the NHS employed their 'own' Police Force as every other UK Government Department seems to have one, ie: MOD Police, Transport Police, Nuclear Power Plant Police, etc etc.

I for one do not see a problem in having security staff with extended powers working for the NHS as long as it is not abused.



posted on Dec, 4 2009 @ 06:26 AM
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Originally posted by AlienChaser

And attention should be called but not by outsiders..

This particularly bothers me!

Are we not all members of the ATS community?
Do we not all participate in threads regarding individual opinions on various situations, and the state of governments from all around the world?


Ok, i take that back, but attention should not be called by outsiders in a way that comes across as demeaning.


As I said, if I began describing the US as an Orwellian Nanny State and picking out an issue that occurs in every developed country as if it were solely a US problem, don't you agree that it would be over the top? And do you also agree that it would offend many people if I didn't use some form of tact in my writing to ensure it doesn't come across condescending or demeaning as a result of the emotionless internet?

While now I realize how your OP was meant and I appreciate it, I do however have a point - whether you can see it or not lol



posted on Dec, 4 2009 @ 07:23 AM
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The nursery our toddler attends recently sent us a letter home saying they are following government guidlines and gave a list of foods that they wouldn't give to our toddler if we sent them in.

I can't believe the government is telling me what I am allowed to feed my own child!


Strangely enough the meals supplied by the nursery to government guidlines seem to be balanced for an adult not a 2 year old child. There has been a huge increase in malnutrition in children in the UK because of parents forcing children to eat a diet considered healthy for an adult.

This governments metrics and control over this country may be well intentioned but generally end up doing more harm than good.



[edit on 4/12/2009 by LightFantastic]



posted on Dec, 4 2009 @ 07:48 AM
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Originally posted by Dermo
Have you ever been there? Doesn't sound like it.. because anyone who has wouldn't write something like this in such a blind manner.


...But I have! I was born in Thornton Heath in Surrey and lived in England for over 35 years. I guessed Labour would be a catastrophe for my country, but it turned out that I was being overly optimistic. I emigrated to Canada in 1996, a few months before Blair arrived.


Originally posted by Dermo
From what I can gather by the way you are writing what you are writing, you are trying to imply that the UK is completely screwed and has succumbed to some form of Orwellian system in an Authoritarian totalitarian regime that has only one goal - to control everything... and all this is based on examples that are irrelevant in relation to the issue as a whole.


In 2000, I went back for a few months. As the plane took off from Heathrow, I felt like I was escaping from some top security prison camp. The drip, drip, drip acidic erosion of liberty means that few people realisde how bad it is. Arriving back in Canada, it felt just as if someone had taken a rucksack packed with slate off my back.

Everyone their regularly sells their soul, and all their future hopes just to pay next months mortgage.

What surprises me is that it is not the entire population that is on hard drugs or boozed up to the eyes to cope with the England of Blair and Brown's Labour. Compliance is a 24/7 job, round the clock that requires one to monitor every word one says and consumes at minimum 100% of one's income.

I still have friends there including a pal from my school days, called Chris and his wife. Chris rose up through the ranks of Safeways from unloadiing the trucks to being a store manager by being a real yes-man and sacking anyone that in anyway was not committed to the Safeways vision of the world. Yet Chris, an utterly born yes-man is now unable to cope with Labour and finds himself regularly under its watchful eye. As he is unable to emigrate through being marginally too old, he got himself a job which requires him to be in Hong Kong much of the time as a way of getting away from it. For a middle class manager to find Communist Maoist China a welcome relief from Gordon Brown's England, err, what's wrong with this picture, people?




[edit on 4-12-2009 by aristocrat2]



posted on Dec, 4 2009 @ 08:14 AM
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Originally posted by aristocrat2
What surprises me is that it is not the entire population that is on hard drugs or boozed up to the eyes to cope with the England of Blair and Brown's Labour. Compliance is a 24/7 job, round the clock that requires one to monitor every word one says and consumes at minimum 100% of one's income.
For a middle class manager to find Communist Maoist China a welcome relief from Gordon Brown's England, err, what's wrong with this picture, people?


It must be shocking as an ex-pat to see what this country has become by having this witless bunch in power.

Most do not notice the creep of control and loss of liberty. The BBC was showing people that had been arrested or photos deleted this morning for taking photographs of tourist attractions!

Bottom feeding Civil Servants can now have access to all your private information without a court order, such as bank statements, internet activity and lists of phone numbers called. They can also have you surveilled!

The majority struggle to pay mortgages that take the majority of their family income.

I would have been out of here long ago if the wife didn't want to stay because of the family she sees a couple of times a year. Many of my friends have left or are planning on leaving.



posted on Dec, 4 2009 @ 08:23 AM
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Originally posted by aristocrat2
In 2000, I went back for a few months. As the plane took off from Heathrow, I felt like I was escaping from some top security prison camp. The drip, drip, drip acidic erosion of liberty means that few people realisde how bad it is. Arriving back in Canada, it felt just as if someone had taken a rucksack packed with slate off my back.




I commend you on the most ridiculously colorful and imaginative description of what I can only describe as the biggest pile of rubbish I have ever heard. No offense meant of course.


I have never been to Canada so I cant comment on whether or not there is less gravity in Toronto Airport when you step off the plane in order to give you that feeling


All Im saying guys is that I hear this stuff from so many of you in the US and elsewhere about the UK and European dictatorships/totalitarian/Authoritarian systems while most of it is heresay, assumptions and generalizations that are Alex Jones-esque/Glen Beck-esque ways of detaching yourself from reality and creating example of your fears in another country and pointing the fingers like the Spanish inquisition.


For example.. I had some idiot on this site try to convince me that Ireland.. My country.. has some of the worlds most undemocratic, draconian and totalitarian laws, that we are one of the most socialist countries in the world and that the NWO uses our police state as a figurehead with which to spread this totalitarian system to the rest of Europe!!!! Now.. this person had never been to Ireland or Europe and probably never even left the US. They had no examples of any of the rubbish they were spouting and resorted to insulting me when I began questioning what they were saying.. Similar to that person who began calling me an Idiot and a Troll because they don't respect another opinion.


I am in the UK regularly.. part of it touches my own country.. I love the UK, great country, great people, with small but very highlighted differences. Yes they have a more Authoritarian system than mine but they also have a ridiculously big population and for its size, can be very violent as a result and many of these systems are being tested to try and deal with that. Is it going to happen to the rest of the world in some shape or form as we evolve? Yes.. is there anything we can do about it? No.



posted on Dec, 4 2009 @ 09:13 AM
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reply to post by Wotan
 


One of my in between jobs was in the NHS (Odstock in Salisbury) and I have a few friends who are nurses in the mental health field., one works with the police in Manchester dealing with the really difficult issues that arise.. I really feel security in Hospitals should be carried out by PCSO level officers appointed to specific hsopitals, not private security gaurds.

So I do agree that there should be no tolerence of violence towards anyone, but I am dubious of allowing private companies the right to impose penalties, I do feel once you step over into the profit making arena there is little leeway in dealing with the complex issues that arise in the NHS.

In one situation I took an injured collegue to the local A&E (Worthing) and the parking attendant (a private contractor) would not allow me to take my injured collegue (visable head injury) into the A&E until I paid the pay and display.. I had to prop my injured collegue against the bonnet of my car while I search for cash.. I made a complaint to the hospital to only be told I should have called an ambulance as they have no control over what policy is implemented in their car park.

From your posts I understand you work with difficult patients, do you really feel the NHS management teams will care what policy is used to define the fines, or indeed if it is abused.. they just do not have the scope to manage those additional burdens.

I've done a lot of work myself with schizophrenics (as a volunteer advocate) and I know a number who are violent (especially when they stop taking their meds) they hurl a lot of abuse NHS staff, Polcie, indeed any one trying to help, but I can't say I agree with fineing them every time they go into their own world paranoid world and need sectioning.



posted on Dec, 4 2009 @ 09:30 AM
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In light of the events of the last year and a half, here in the UK there have been many accusations and charges levelled against innocent people in direct reaction to the deaths of toddlers at the hands of their parents/parents boyfriends.

In all of these sad cases there were mental health issues & drug problems with the parents and their live in partners. Also, these children had been highlighted as "at risk" and were allocated social workers. Why then, if the system is aware that it is overstretched and in need of drastic overhaul, why is it choosing to run like the headless chicken that it is, in the completely opposite direction jumping on caring parents and innocent individuals? Meanwhile, those parents with mental health problems and drug issues do not recieve the help and support they need?

I cannot go into any of the cases I have heard about, but what I am seeing is an ass covering exercise and absolute confusion as to what the gvt wants from the professionals within the system.

It would be interesting to hear some inside views from doctors and other healthcare professionals who work directly with children, given the recent changes and training in spotting and reporting possible signs of abuse.

I am particularly interested in what UK paediatric Consultants, and other A&E staff in children's hospitals feel about their position/role in light of the recent changes within paediatrics and child safety guidlines that have come about in direct response to the Baby P, Baby Lee, and other such recent tragic cases.

I fully expect to see many cases of wrongful accusations being highlighted in the not to distant future. Meanwhile many more children who are at real risk will continue to fall through the system as though they are invisible.

I do regular work within the Prison, and also the HIV sector. My husband is a Senior Lecturer in Social Work Training, Social Anthropology and Sociology. There are many cases I have heard of over this last year, however as they are still pending through the court system 15 months to date), I am unwilling to bring them up.





posted on Dec, 6 2009 @ 05:23 PM
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I found this in the news today and thought I ought to post it. I don't even know how many of these threads are floating around - at least two more, besides the two I've found.



www.timesonline.co.uk...
Two children considered to be at risk of abuse because they are severely obese have been removed from the protection register after scientists discovered that they carry a newly identified genetic abnormality that explains their weight.

Evidence from a ground-breaking study has convinced social workers that the children’s obesity was not caused by parental neglect or deliberate overfeeding but by a missing segment of DNA. The cases of another two children on the at-risk register have also been placed under review, after research showed them to have the same genetic deletion.



posted on Dec, 6 2009 @ 05:39 PM
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reply to post by WyrdeOne
 


I think this is a good example of Social Workers acting solely on the opinoin of doctors initial opinion, and being too quick to jump in in certain cases, without looking into other possible causes. Too slow in other instances.

Could you give links to the other two similar threads please?




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