Page last updated at 11:02 GMT, Monday, 6 April 2009 12:02 UK

Baby unlawfully taken from mother

Social workers in Nottingham failed to follow the correct legal processes in separating a baby from its teenage mother, a report has concluded.

Nottingham City Children's Services placed the baby, known as "K", into local authority care three hours after he was born in January 2008.

The mother, who cannot be named, began a legal battle to get her son returned.

Baby K was initially reunited with his mother, who was 18 at the time of his birth, but then placed in foster care.

Concerns raised

After social services officials in Nottingham removed the child from his mother he was returned when a judge ruled they did not have a court order.

However, an order was subsequently granted to put the baby into foster care.


Our decision to separate the baby from his mother was made in good faith

Nottingham City Council statement

A review of the case was commissioned in February 2008 by the then director of children's services for Nottingham City Council.

The mother was known to social services by the time she had her child, the report found.

She had been in the care of Nottingham City Council and at the time of her pregnancy a social worker raised concerns that she would be unable to care for it after its birth.

The unborn baby was placed on the child protection register.

A decision had already been made to separate the mother and baby but because various processes were not followed Nottingham City Children's Services did not have the correct court papers.

Child cruelty

Social services officials and health professionals acted in the baby's best interests even though the correct procedures were not in place, it found.

The mother was subsequently convicted in February 2009 of child cruelty in relation to baby K and given a two-year community order with supervision.

In a statement, Nottingham City Council said: "Baby K is safe and well today because of the actions of social workers, health professionals and other agency representatives, acting in the best interests of the child and in the belief that the mother had agreed to separation from her baby in hospital.

"Our decision to separate the baby from his mother was made in good faith. The concerns of professionals were subsequently endorsed by the courts which granted a care order.

"We fully accept that there were lapses of process and we have addressed these to ensure such lapses aren't repeated in the future.

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The case of 'Baby K' shot to national prominence last year.



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SEE ALSO
Teenager's baby case 'not isolated'
21 Mar 08 |  Nottinghamshire
Damages agreed over newborn case
20 Mar 08 |  Nottinghamshire
Girl wins damages over taken baby
18 Feb 08 |  Nottinghamshire
Baby must remain in foster care
07 Feb 08 |  Nottinghamshire

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FROM OTHER NEWS SITES
The Sun Baby-faced brothers smiled and yawned ..but showed no fear - 6 hrs ago
Nottingham Evening Post Lessons learned from Baby K - 26 hrs ago
Worthing Today Newborn taken from mother because of 'confused process' - 37 hrs ago



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