076 Bradford VCS Dave Benn

076 Bradford VCS Dave Benn


Dave is a Barnardo’s Children’s Service Manager in Bradford  and is Young Lives Bradford VCS representative on Bradford Safeguarding Children Board. The VCS has played a central role in the business of BSCB since the Board was launched in 2006 (and included as a signatory of the ‘Statement of Intent’). The VCS are well represented within the BSCB structure and it is important for the sector and for the welfare of children and young people across the district that the sector maintains  this coordinated presence .  Dave is presently chair of the VCS Safeguarding Group and has in the past chaired BSCB sub group and specific task and finish work streams.  Dave is committed to work with strategic partners to make Bradford a place where children and young people from all communities feel safe and develop skills and opportunities which will support them into adulthood.

The episode starts with an interview I gave on a new report about the impact on children who have been’missing’ and had their details all over social media.

Then the main interview with Dave Benn.  Lots more to come and the Spring has sprung!

Thanks as always to AlbaDigitalMedia for technical help with the podcast.

Please use speakpipe or other contact methods to let me know your views.


Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
075 Interviews and Inquiries-Social Care & Sexual Abuse

075 Interviews and Inquiries-Social Care & Sexual Abuse

This time I’m looking at a magazine format with two radio interviews and an introduction to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse chaired by Professor Alexis Jay on the day it commences its hearings.

The interviews are on the real problems of social care funding where the Government is allowing some ringfenced council tax increase to be introduced and, secondly, what are the issues in dealing with inappropriate staff behaviour that is not enough to prosecute but enough to worry.

Contact details for the Inquiry are :-    www.iicsa.org.uk    contact@iicsa.org.uk      tel  0800 917 1000

As always my thanks to AlbaDigitalMedia for technical support.

Please remember to give feedback, whether through Speakpipe or e-mail, Twitter  etc


Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather

074 Bradford Interviews Supt Damien Miller

Damien Miller is a Superintendent within Bradford District who leads on Safeguarding Partnerships.  Within his portfolio he has responsibility for the Multi Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH), Child & Adult Safeguarding, Domestic Violence, Safer Schools, Missing People, Mental Health and Families First.  He started in this role in September 2016, but is no stranger to Bradford, having worked in the District for the last five years.  He had responsibility in his previous role for Operational Policing as well as being Project Manager for the Operational Delivery Review Team, which saw the District meet its budget reductions following the Comprehensive Spending Review. As well as doing his day job, he is also an Advanced Public Order Commander and regularly spends his weekends commanding Bradford City’s matches.  With him entering his 20th year of policing in 2017, he is still committed to why he initially joined West Yorkshire Police and that is keeping people safe and delivering the best possible service to the communities of West Yorkshire.


Thanks as always to Alba Digital Media for technical support.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
073 Bradford interviews   Chair of Adult Safeguarding

073 Bradford interviews Chair of Adult Safeguarding

Jonathan Phillips is a qualified social worker. For many years he worked in social services in a number of frontline, training and management roles. He then moved to the voluntary sector as a Director with National Deaf Children’s Society. An interest in Deaf people comes from his daughter who is Deaf ( and now so is her partner and one of her children). He then worked for the social services inspectorate and moved to the Commission for Social Care Inspection when it was set up as a National Director. His final job before retirement was director of Adult Social Services at Calderdale. Since retiring 5 years ago he has chaired 2 safeguarding adults boards and provided other consultancy services. Jonathan is very interested in disability rights and is a strong believer in people’s rights to choose their own lifestyle and social  workers responsibility to support them when ever possible.


Thanks as always to     www.albadigitalmedia.com  for technical support.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
072 Bradford interviews CDOP Shirley Briarly

072 Bradford interviews CDOP Shirley Briarly

This is the second podcast from the Bradford series.

Shirley is a Consultant in Public Health for the City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council and Chairs the Child Death Overview Panel for the Safeguarding Board.

She was a hospital doctor and GP across West Yorkshire for 10 years & also worked in Mozambique for 3 years. She was a GP partner in Bradford district in the inner city for 5 years until 1997. She then re-trained in Public Health from 1999 onwards  and worked across Bradford and Calderdale in a range of roles. Shirley have been Consultant in Public Health in Bradford  district for the  last 8 years and have had a key strategic role in Maternal Child Health over many years. She have chaired the Child Death Overview Panel sub group of Bradford Safeguarding Childrens Board for several years.


Thanks as always to Alba Digital Media for all technical assistance.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
071 Professor Tan Ngoh Tiong Global Inst of Social Work

071 Professor Tan Ngoh Tiong Global Inst of Social Work

Dr Tan Ngoh Tiong is Professor of Social Work and former Dean of School of Human Development and Social Services, SIM University Singapore. He is the Chair of the Global Institute of Social Work, was Co-chair of Commonwealth Organization for Social Workers (COSW), Past President of Singapore Association of Social Workers, past Regional President (Asia and Pacific) of International Federation of Social Workers (IFSW). Prof Tan is He led IFSW and COSW’s FAST (Families And Survivors of Tsunami) Project as an international social work response to the Asian tsunami disaster. He is currently President of ConneXions International and has been active in international social work and social development.

He has authored a number of books and scholarly articles including Asian Tsunami and Social Work Practice, Challenge of Social Care in Asia, Extending Frontiers: Social Issues and Social Work in Singapore, Human Rights Perspective, Alternative Dispute Resolution and Social Work Around the World Volumes I, II and III. He is a consultant editor and reviewer for Families in Society, Journal of Global Social Work Practice, China Journal of Social Work and Asia Pacific Journal of Social Work and Development. Prof Tan received his Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota; MSW from University of Pennsylvania and BA from University of Singapore. He has been a Visiting Scholar to Cambridge University and Harvard University as well as UC-Berkeley, Oslo University and Sydney University.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
070 The Bradford LSCB Interviews 01

070 The Bradford LSCB Interviews 01

This is the first in a series of podcasts looking at the Bradford Safeguarding Children Board which I have the privilage to Chair.

Initially, in five interviews with key members of the Board, you will get to experience a flavour of the work of the Board and the people who serve on it.

The first is with Michael Jameson.  Michael is the Strategic Director of Children’s Services having responsibility for strategic leadership across education, employment and skills, social care, safeguarding children and youth offending. His stated aim is to work with partners to make Bradford a place where children and young people from all communities feel safe, enjoy living, and develop the skills and opportunities to fulfil their potential.

Bradford itself is a vibrant city in West Yorkshire of about half a million people with a very high number of children under 18.

It also has a rich cultural diversity with about 120 languages spoken.

Following podcasts will feature other Board members such as the Consultant in Public Health who also Chairs the Child Death Overview Panel, the Superintendent of Police responsible for safeguarding, the Chair of the Adult Safeguarding Board and the Headteacher who chairs our Education sub committee.

Thanks as always to Alba Digital Media for technical support to this Podcast.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
069 Social Work Across the Atlantic

069 Social Work Across the Atlantic

Hello again. This programme features a short radio interview I gave on recruitment , retention and the reasons behind vacancy rates/agency staff numbers.

Then my guest is Deona Hooper, based in South Carolina and the founder of  Social Work Helper digital newsletter/magazine.. She describes it as a “woman owned mission driven progress website providing news, information, and resources related to social issues, social justice, social good and human rights issues”.

Deona is the Founder, Developer, and Editor-in-Chief of Social Work Helper. She has a Masters in Social Work with a concentration in Management and Community Practice with a Certificate in Nonprofit Management- both from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

https://www.socialworkhelper.com, or you can contact on Twitter: @swhelpercom

Also developing an App for the social work community in the USA. Check it out and give her feedback and have a think how it would work here in the UK.


Thanks, as always, to Alba Digital Media for technical support to the Podcast.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
068 Churches Child Protection Advisory Service

068 Churches Child Protection Advisory Service

Justin Humphreys is the Executive Director of Safeguarding of CCPAS. This Charity , formed in 1977, has over 8000 subscribing organisations, churches and other bodies that look to it for training, consultancy , DBS checking and general support. It operates all through the UK and has strong links abroad.

Justin talks of the challenges facing faith based organisations in the current climate of attention on historic abuse and what CCPAS is able to do to make them safer.

The objective is to make vulnerable children and adults safer when involved with places of worship, organisations and individuals in the wider faith community.

Find out more about them ( main number 01322 517817) , through www.ccpas.co.uk ,  or a 24 hour helpline 0845 120 4550 (though out of hours for urgent calls only)

Thanks, as always, to Alba Digital Media for technical support to the Podcast.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
067 James Rook CEO Sanctuary

067 James Rook CEO Sanctuary


I felt that it was important to look at the private sector and Sanctuary provides staff across health and social care. James is one of the most influential figures in this sector and the interdependence that exists with employers seems likely to continue indefinitely.

After 20 years of developing and resourcing work within adult and children’s social care, James , as the Chief Executive, has built up a unique understanding of the sector. Agency staff and interim appointments are part of the fabric of the social care landscape. When he set up Sanctuary he employed eight staff and it’s a positive statement of the company that, although it has grown to be the largest provider of social workers in the sector, the same eight staff are still there.

He has an enormous passion for the work, supporting a number of charities, in particular the Social Work Awards which are now an established part of the calendar.

Much of his time is spent with the leaders of social care within local authority, central government and the third sector.

Thanks , as always,  to Alba Digital Media for their technical support.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
066  Ruth ALLEN Chief Executive BASW

066 Ruth ALLEN Chief Executive BASW

Dr Ruth Allen joined the British Association of Social Workers as Chief Executive on 11th April 2016.  She was previously Director of Social Work at South West London & St Georges’ Mental Health Trust and Chair of the Mental Health Faculty at the College of Social Work.  Previous to that she was a head of social care, social care manager and practitioner within local government and the NHS working with client groups of all ages.


We talk of the range of challenges facing social work in the months to come. The programme covers thoughts on domestic and international issues as well as messages for the tens of thousands of social workers in the four home nations.

Thanks as always to Alba Digital Media for technical support in making this podcast.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
065 Dept for Education Review of LSCBs  Alan Wood

065 Dept for Education Review of LSCBs Alan Wood

Alan Wood has been asked by the Secretary of State, Nicky Morgan MP and the Minister, Edward Timpson MP to lead a fundamental review of the role and functions of Local Safeguarding Children Boards (LCSBs). This will include the child death review process and consideration of how the intended centralisation of serious case reviews (SCRs) will work effectively at local level.

Alan was a previous guest on the programme when President of the Association of Directors of Children’s Services.

His CV includes:-

2014: appointed, secretary of state to review children’s services, Birmingham city council; 2013: commissioner, children’s services, Doncaster council (appt by secretary of state to review its children’s services); 2006-present: corporate director, children and young people’s services, London borough (LB)of Hackney; 2002-12: chief executive, The Learning Trust (a not-for-profit organisation delivering all education services in LB Hackney); 2000-2001: director of education, LB Lambeth; 1997-2000: deputy director/assistant director of education, LB Lambeth; 1990-1997: head of pupil support and special educational needs, LB Southwark; 1977-1990: history teacher.

President ADCS; 1982-90: Labour councillor, Camden council.

Recorded from his phone in the Dept for Education

Thanks , as always , to Alba Digital Media for technical support in making this Podcast.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
064 Review of Safeguarding Children Boards

064 Review of Safeguarding Children Boards


The Government announced just before Christmas a review of Local Safeguarding Children Boards so I invited David Jones , National Chair of the Association of Independent LSCB Chairs, to be my guest.

David is a registered social worker, qualifying in 1974.  He was appointed in 2010 as the Independent Chair of Leicester Safeguarding Children and Adults Boards. His varied career and substantial experience have focused on social work and social services in general, children’s services and child protection.  He helped launch the Association of Independent LSCB Chairs and is currently the National Chair.

David has worked internationally as Chair, Adviser and Consultant to several groups, policy committees, advisory boards and councils. He retired after 4 years as honorary President of the International Federation of Social Workers in 2010 and continues to play a leading role coordinating The Global Agenda for Social Work.

David has held several national roles in government departments and agencies, working with Parliament, Minsters and government officials, retiring from the post of Deputy Director (Children) and Professional Adviser in the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills (Ofsted) in 2010.  He was awarded his doctorate in social work in 2009 for research into the evaluation and inspection of social work.


Thanks, as always to Alba Digital Media for their technical support in making this Podcast.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
063 Michael Hames.  Police pioneer against child abuse

063 Michael Hames. Police pioneer against child abuse

My guest is Michael Hames who I’ve known for 20 years and whom I worked with on several initiatives and investigations starting when he was at Scotland Yard.

He was born in Colchester, Essex and after education at the Colchester Royal Grammar School, joined the Metropolitan Police in 1962.  He served for 32 years  and held a variety of management positions at senior rank from 1970.  During much of this time, he specialised in the detection of sex offenders.

For the last 5 years of his service, he was the Detective Superintendent in charge of the Obscene Publications Branch at New Scotland Yard. During his time there, he re-focussed the work to encompass the proactive detection of paedophile offenders and it has subsequently been renamed the Paedophilia Unit of the Organised Crime Group.  He developed and refined, the use of the first National Index of convicted and suspected paedophiles until the formation of the National Criminal Intelligence Service in 1993, when the Index was transferred to the Home Office Unit.

He supervised the operational unit which achieved outstanding success and world wide acknowledgment of its pioneering work to combat paedophiles.

He was the U.K. Interpol representative  on the Standing Working Group on Offences Against Children.  He chaired the sub-committee on law Enforcement methods and was the leading police advocate of legislation to ban possession of child pornography throughout the member States, as well as extra-territorial legislation to deal with child abusers who travel and commit offences outside their jurisdiction.  He has regular contact with non governmental agencies such as E.C.P.A.T. (End Child Prostitution, Child Pornography and the Trafficking of children for sexual purposes), The National Centre for Missing and Exploited Children, in the U.S., as well as law enforcement agencies throughout the world.

He was also  a member of the Sexual Offences Steering Committee at Scotland Yard.  He has carried out research into Organised and Ritual Abuse of Children and is an acknowledged authority on the subject of Child Sexual Abuse.  He has lectured widely at home and abroad and published articles in the press and professional journals.  He frequently appears on Television and Radio.

He is now an independent consultant, advising and training at the request of  Local Authorities, Charities and Private Companies on a variety of subjects including Child Protection, Staffing issues, Strategic Management and Selection of Staff.  His speciality remains the combating of Child Abuse in Organisations.

He holds a post graduate Diploma in Management Studies.  He holds the British Psychological Society’s Level ‘B’ Certificate in psychometric testing.

His autobiography, ‘The Dirty  Squad’ was published by Little Brown in April 2000.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
062  DONALD FINDLATER– Lucy Faithfull Foundation

062 DONALD FINDLATER– Lucy Faithfull Foundation

Lucy Faithfull Foundation believes that child sexual abuse is preventable and that we can have a society where children are free from sexual abuse and exploitation.  Their purpose is to safeguard children and young people from sexual abuse by preventing it and responding to it. 

Their stated mission is to prevent abuse from happening by working in partnership with voluntary and statutory sector professionals as well as the general public.

This week saw the launch of a major initiative by the Foundation—

A national internet video campaign has been launched to encourage people who view images of child sexual abuse online to seek help.

The videos feature warnings of the harm done by viewing such images.

The Lucy Faithfull Foundation (LFF) said it was aimed to deter would-be offenders and encourage them to seek therapy before being arrested.

Donald Findlater is their Director of Research and Development

For seven years, Donald was Manager of the Wolvercote Clinic, the UK’s only residential assessment and treatment centre for men with allegations of or convictions for child sexual abuse. This followed a career in the Probation Service where, latterly, he was responsible for the development and delivery of Surrey Probation Service’s sex offender strategy. Over recent years Donald has worked as a “subject matter expert” with the DCSF (now Department of Education) in the creation and delivery of “Safer Recruitment” training programmes for Heads and Governors of schools and for recruiters into the wider children’s workforce.

As well as being Director of the child sexual abuse public education campaign, Stop it Now! UK and Ireland, Donald managed the development of the Lucy Faithfull Foundation’s Circles of Support and Accountability programme. He has also managed a joint project with Securus (a software company) developing and deploying the means of monitoring the home computer use of known sex offenders.

At Stop it Now! UK and Ireland Donald has steered development of the Helpline, as well as the Stop it Now! website and its online self-help tools and resources from their inception. He is regularly in demand from print and broadcast media outlets to comment on all aspects of child sexual abuse and exploitation prevention work and is considered a leading expert in the field, both in the UK and internationally.

Thanks as always to Alba Digital Media for technical support

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
061 A Magazine for Autumn

061 A Magazine for Autumn

Hello again after the Summer! I thought I’d use this chance to reflect on a few of the significant events over the last month before we get back into the regular pattern of Podcasts.
The worldwide refugee crisis—-More thoughts on abuse by priests—A Freedom of Information request by the BBC about the increase in numbers of abuse cases reported in schools and an interview I did about it—Finally, news that I’ve been appointed as Chair of a second Safeguarding Children Board–Bradford–and am really looking forward to working there.

Thanks as always to Alba Digital Media for technical support.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
060 Dr Simon Lenton – Child Friendly Health Care

060 Dr Simon Lenton – Child Friendly Health Care

 Interview with Dr Simon Lenton  MB, ChB, DRCOG, MRCP, MPH/DLSHTM, FRCPCH, MFPH

He completed his medical training in Aberdeen in 1977 and was appointed as a Consultant Paediatrician in Community Child Health (CPCCH) in Bath in 1987 after training in New Zealand, Canada and the UK.

Between 1996 and 2000 he completed Public Health training with a Masters in Public Health (MPH) from LSHTM and placements with the commissioning arm of Wiltshire Health Authority and a further placement Southwest Regional Office.

Between 2000-3 he worked as a Policy Adviser in the Department of Health and helped develop the Children’s National Service Framework (NSF) providing advice to Ministers on a wide range of issues relating to the health and well-being of children across a number of Government departments.

In 2003 he was elected to Vice President (Health Services) within the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH) and led “Modelling the Future” which identified the problems facing children’s health services in the UK and sets out a vision and strategy for the future development of children’s health services.

Between 2009 and 2011 he chaired the expert working group on “Child Friendly Health Care” (CFHC) on behalf of the Council of Europe. CFHC translated the values contained within the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child into a practical framework for service delivery. This piece of work has now been endorsed by 47 health ministers across Europe through a Declaration signed in October 2011.

Then Chair the British Association for Community Child Health (BACCH) and now Co-chair of The British Association for Child and Adolescent Public Health (BACAPH).

We talk of his commitment to child and family friendly health care and the background to this internationally endorsed initiative with its relevance to multi agency work in safeguarding.

Further helpful links:-

Child Friendly


Family Friendly


You Tube



My thanks as always to Alba Digital Media for their technical assistance in this Podcast.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
059  Papyrus– Youth Suicide Prevention Charity

059 Papyrus– Youth Suicide Prevention Charity

I talked to Alice Newton , the suicide prevention training co-ordinator for Papyrus, a national charity dedicated to supporting young people contemplating suicide and raising awareness about the level of need.

They provide confidential help and advice to young people and anyone worried about a young person, help others to prevent young suicide by working with and training professionals as well as campaigning to influence national policy.

The 2015 PAPYRUS conference will be held on 27th June 2015 at Resource for London, 356 Holloway Road, London N7 6PA.

National Confidential Helpline –- HOPELineUK. If you are a young person at risk of suicide or are worried about a young person at risk of suicide: 0800 068 41 41

or Papyrus on 01925 572 444

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
058 Professor Harry Ferguson on social work practice.

058 Professor Harry Ferguson on social work practice.

This is another podcast from the highly successful BASPCAN Congress held at Edinburgh University.

Professor Harry Ferguson on social work practice in families , how social workers engage with children and what the landscape of the profession is like today. Harry joined the university of Nottingham in November 2008 as Professor of Social Work. Prior to that he held posts at the University of the West of England, Bristol and in his native Ireland at University College Dublin, Trinity College Dublin and University College Cork. He is a qualified social worker and completed his PhD in the Faculty of Social and Political Sciences, University of Cambridge (1987-1990), which was a historical sociological study of social work and child protection. His teaching and research interests lie in the areas of child protection, domestic violence, social interventions into fatherhood and men’s lives, and the social science of social work.

Thanks as always to Alba Digital Media for technical support and podcast production. Don’t forget Voicemail on the left of this page if you want to leave a comment.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
061 A Magazine for Autumn

056 Social Work in Scotland and N Ireland

Following the general election I thought it interesting to hear about what’s happening in these two countries.

Alan Baird.

Alan Baird 300

The Scottish Government’s Chief Social Work Adviser. Previously Director of Social Work, Dundee City Council for the previous 11 years and Past President of the Association of Directors of Social Work.

In general, his role is to advise the Government on social work issues as they arise. To help him do this, he has a staff of nine civil servants and meets on a regular basis with Scottish Government Ministers.

Sean Holland.  Sean Pic

Before training as a social worker at the University of Ulster in 1987 Sean Holland worked as a residential worker for homeless charities in Nottingham and Belfast. After qualifying Sean worked in family and child care, disability services and training.

As Chief Social Services Officer of Social Services (CSSO) for Northern Ireland, Sean leads a team which supports Ministers, the Department of Health, other Government Departments and agencies working in the fields of social care and social work. Sean also has responsibility for policy for family and child care, mental health, older people and people with disabilities within the Department of Health.

Sean has an LLM in Medical Law, has worked with government departments on the development of social services in Bulgaria, Croatia, Azerbaijan and Jordan and is a member of the Advisory Committee for the Child Protection Centre at the University of Edinburgh.

Also in this programme I’ve included a Speakpipe request and would welcome more of them to hear your thoughts and ideas.

As always my thanks to Alba Digital Media for technical support in making this podcast possible.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
061 A Magazine for Autumn

055 Self Leadership in Social Work

“Self Leadership in Social Work” , subtitled “reflections from practice”, a new book by Bill McKitterick that offers a fresh and innovative view on leadership for social workers and managers.It’s a call for confident, skilled and knowledgeable practice in social work. Published by Policy Press.

Bill is a social worker now working in supervision and leadership. He has been a director of social services for ten years, including leading workforce development. He has worked in programmes to improve social work practice in local authority services following critical inspections and has contributed through the British Association of Social Workers and the College of Social Work to the national reform programme.


Thanks as always to Alba Digital Media for technical support, audio production and podcast syndication.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
075 Interviews and Inquiries-Social Care & Sexual Abuse

054 Mandatory Reporting Debate

The formal debate on mandatory reporting took place at the BASPCAN Congress in Edinburgh  where a packed theatre voted substantially against the proposal initially and , at the end, still voted against but with a much reduced majority.

This debate, whoever wins the General Election, will continue to divide the professional community.

Peter Garsden, the President of the UK Association of Child Abuse Lawyers has represented over 25 class actions of survivors of abuse and speaks for the introduction of legislation to make this compulsory with sanctions imposed on professionals who knowingly fail to report abuse.

Dr Jill McLeigh, a clinical assistant professor at the Kempe Centre for the Prevention and Treatment of Child Abuse at Colorado University argues against the proposal citing the unsatisfactory situation in the USA where it has been Federal Law since 1963.

Associate Professor Ben Mathews from the Australian Centre for Health Law research at Queensland University of Technology has researched this comprehensively and draws on over 10 years of data to argue the case, though not speaking in the main debate.

The podcast is a bit longer than usual but , I hope you agree worth it.

Thanks as always to Alba Digital Media for technical support, audio production and podcast syndication.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
053 BASPCAN Congress interviews

053 BASPCAN Congress interviews

John Devaney MBE, Director of Social Work Education at Queens University , Belfast who Chaired the Congress gives his thoughts on the success of the event.John Devaney twitter

John was 20 years a social work practitioner and joined the University in 2006. He is also National Chair of the British Association for the Study of Child Abuse and Neglect.


Then, to follow, Sue Berelowitz, the Deputy Children’s Commissioner for England, talks about new initiatives and improved chances to hear the voice of the child in their “see me hear me” “no longer invisible” programme.







As always, my thanks to Alba Digital Media for  their technical expertise and all audio production and syndication of this podcast.

Many more top interviews from this prestigious conference to come.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
052 Child Trafficking & Modern Slavery

052 Child Trafficking & Modern Slavery

The practice of child trafficking and modern slavery in the 21st century at the level that it exists is one of the most appalling and shameful indictments of the worldwide human condition.

Bharti Patel is CEO of ECPAT UK. Bharti has more than fifteen years’ experience working to address human rights abuses around the world, leading high-profile research, campaigning and advocacy organisations in the UK and India. Bharti’s passion to challenge the root causes of child exploitation and abuse underpins her leadership role with ECPAT UK, where she has overseen important changes to law and policy in the area of child protection and trafficking prevention. In the UK, Bharti’s prior achievements include successfully lobbying for Britain’s first-ever national minimum wage legislation and helping secure basic employment rights for low-paid and part-time workers. In India, Bharti worked on sustainable development programmes addressing the strengthening of food, water and livelihood security for vulnerable communities. An accomplished speaker and writer, Bharti has featured widely in the British print and broadcast media, and is regularly quoted in articles on poverty, inequality, child trafficking and child protection.

My thanks , as always, to Alba Digital Media for technical support and all podcast post production in making this podcast possible.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
061 A Magazine for Autumn

051 Child Protection

It certainly has been child protection week! With the Prime Minister announcing his ideas for professionals in child protection to be charged with ‘wilful neglect’– carrying a prison term of up to 5 years if they fail to report a child in danger. The fact that the Oxford cases that sparked this latest thinking specifically said that there was no evidence of wilful neglect and with all safeguarding training emphasising the necessity to share even the hint of concern with a colleague, it seems a wrong direction to take. I’ve no problem with anyone being held to account for deliberately not helping a child at risk but the terrible shortfall in staff numbers and the great need for more human and training resources would seem to be the way to go.

Then, I was invited on BBC Newsnight   http://tinyurl.com/kheq4gl (32.5 minutes in)      to talk about the first conviction of a sex offender resulting from vigilante entrapment. Interesting!

Finally, and I’ve included the interview on the podcast, I talked to BBC Wiltshire about a perceived  high growth in the numbers of Children in Need referrals in their region.

Thanks, as always, to Alba Digital Media for their technical support in producing this Podcast.




Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
050 A Story of Historic Abuse

050 A Story of Historic Abuse

With the announcement of the new Chair of the Historic Abuse Inquiry this is a story that should be referred to that inquiry as I think it typical of the unfinished business that this country is awash with and the hundreds, if not thousands, of survivors out there still living with the legacy of what was done to them.
Usually I give interviews to the media on child protection, cases, policy or other concerns but this time I thought I’d look at a current case. Pam Caulfield ( pictured ) is an investigative journalist with the BBC in Hereford and Worcestershire and has been reporting, presenting and producing for 7 years. She has researched the story of St Gilberts approved school in Worcestershire, run until 1975 by the De La Salle Order of Christian Brothers–a teaching order still active today. She found a shocking history of sexual and physical abuse, perpetrated at the school, with rape and sadistic beatings commonplace. Two former pupils talked of their ordeals and many more are still living with the legacy. I’m going to follow this story as it unfolds and as the (belated) police investigation by West Mercia Police continues. All praise to Pam Caulfield as she describes her long journey of discovery.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
049  Young adults & learning disability

049 Young adults & learning disability

This episode has a conversation about a non profit company working with young adults with a learning disability and a bit from me about the comments of Simon Bailey, Chief Constable with a leading role in combatting child sex abuse. He advocates that some “non-contact” paedophiles who just download child porn should be referred to the Health service rather than the criminal justice system. I disagree.
But first……….
George L Livingstone, Consultant is a qualified Social Worker and Manager, with over 35 years’ experience in the Social Work, Social Care, Child Care and Quality Assurance Sectors at a range of levels in addition to over 10 years as a Senior Manager, Director and Managing Director in the Adult Education Sector. George provides Management Training, Health and Social Care Training, Tender Writing Training, Tender Writing Coaching, Policy writing and Review, Tender Writing and Conference Organisation. One of his responsibilities involves consulting for
Nansen Highland, which is a non-governmental organisation based in the Highlands of Scotland.
It is a company originally motivated by the life and work of the Norwegian humanitarian and explorer, Fridtjof Nansen.
Nansen Highland principally provides training for young adults with learning disability and related difficulties.
Nansen Highland is set up to train and assist in the training of young adults so to develop their physical, mental and spiritual capacities that they may grow to full maturity as individuals and members of society, and to instruct and to assist in instructing young persons in the principles of discipline, loyalty and good citizenship.

Nansen provides training through its Day Education Centre, Residential Care through 2 small residential units and Home Based Support for those young adults with their own tenancies.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
048 Jane Devine Social Work Scotland

048 Jane Devine Social Work Scotland

What’s the picture of social work in Scotland? After a monumentous year for the country, how is the profession shaping up in Scotland?

Jane Devine is the Business Manager for Social Work Scotland, the successor organisation to the Association of Directors of Social Work.

She talks of initiatives, political support, policy priorities and hopes for the future in a wide ranging interview. She also focusses on the specific work being convened regarding the image of social work and its crucial role in the community.

This is definitely a set of challenges for us to keep an eye on and I’ll follow up as 2015 progresses.

My thanks as always to Alba Digital Media.

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather
061 A Magazine for Autumn

047 BASPCAN Congress

An excellent interview with Julie Taylor who Chairs the Congress Committee for the BASPCAN Congress 2015 at the University of Edinburgh. BASPC AN stands for the British Association for the Study and Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect. You can find it at www.baspcan.org.uk . Its Facebook address is its full name and the Twitter handle for the Congress is #9ed2015. This prestigious event takes place every 3 years and is packed full of top speakers and excellent topics concerning child protection.

Julie Taylor is the inaugural chair of the Child Protection Research Centre, an innovative partnership between the University of Edinburgh and the UK’s leading child protection charity, the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC). Before taking up post in early 2013, she was Head of Strategy and Development (Abuse in High Risk Families) with the NSPCC whilst on a three year secondment from her post as Professor of Family Health in the School of Nursing and Midwifery, University of Dundee. Until March 2010 she was Research Dean and Head of Division (Research and Postgraduate Studies) and led the University’s first submission to the Nursing Unit of Assessment in the national research assessment exercise (RAE 2008). She trained as a nurse in the 1980s at St James’ University Hospital Leeds and held a number of increasingly senior nursing posts before entering higher education in 1992 at the University of York, moving to Dundee in 1997.

Thanks, as always to Alba Digital Media for technical support in making this Podcast possible.

Remember to leave feedback and keep up on Twitter @daveniven.


Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather


Contact David Niven
Thoughts on the Social World
0788 284 1051

Thoughts on the Social World
David Niven


Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinby feather