Lance Scott Walker
Published: 13 January, 2017
• MY condolences and prayers go to the family of Lance Scott Walker, lost before his time, at only 18 – a kind and polite young man (Probe after teenager is killed in stabbing while in Town Hall care, January 6).
Islington Council should be prosecuted for the corporate manslaughter of poor Lance.
I am aware of the family of a child, in the sub-contracted care of the council, who will prosecute it if the child succeeds in a suicide bid, as almost happened last week when the child went to a bridge. Fortunately, someone called 999 and police CCTV found the child.
There is little assistance for the child and the family. The local authority, the GP and occasionally police have marginalised and stigmatised the parent. There is little empathy and just complacency. The parent has to do all the running for help for the child, but to no avail.
The child frequently goes missing from care or home. Police sometimes arrive at the family home, whether or not the child is living there, and can be heard behind the door saying: “This is not a matter for us, this is a social services matter.” However, social services are frequently in a meeting, gone home, on annual leave or off sick.
Children’s services are known to have sent letters to the young person’s neighbours and passed on the wrong address to other services. They hide behind the police.
Is it a case of out of borough and therefore out of mind? It is not just poor children in care; it is middle- or upper-class kids. I am aware of five Islington young people who are located in one particular “care house” outside the borough, where there seems to be little care or supervision, except Islington Council pays the bills.
One thing the council and its partners could do is build a drug and alcohol rehab for children. There is none, neither state nor private, in the UK. That is a tragedy.
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