Sunday, November 16, 2008
It appears from the NOTW that the main witness was a 15 year old girl who appears to have been part of Baby P's household. She told the court that his stepfather cut the ends of his fingers off with a stanley knife and pulled his nails off with pliers; “he made Baby P kneel in front of him, with blood oozing from the ends of his fingers, and hold out his hands for more punishment. Just days before Baby P died—but after his spine was snapped—the girl went for a walk with him and his stepfather in Chingford Woods. The toddler couldn’t stand and kept falling down.
Of all that we hear of children who are abused, I think that image of a little boy trying to walk and not being able to is what has hit me hardest. Sharon Shoesmith was tactlessly accurate, it was this boy's family who murdered him, but we are right to think we can't bear such event. We shouldn't and we should all think about who these people are and what should change, it probalby isn't the the social workers, who just need to learn how to ensure it doesn't happen again.