The Nuffield Family Justice Observatory to develop the first national, evidence-informed good practice guidelines for professionals involved in the process of removing newborn babies from their mother at birth for child protection reasons.
The move is set against the increasing numbers of newborns who are subject to care proceedings in England and Wales with the guidelines being a positive response to help reduce the acute pain and stress experienced by all involved in cases where a baby is removed from their mother at birth – both of families and practitioners.
The guidelines will be developed over the next 18 months by researchers at Lancaster University and the Rees Centre at the University of Oxford with the team working closely with health and social work professionals and birth parents.
Lisa Harker, Director of the Nuffield Family Justice Observatory said:
“Over the past decade there has been a sharp rise in infants in care proceedings, with marked regional variation in the number of cases. In this context, the Nuffield Family Justice Observatory is working in partnership with local authorities to understand the reasons behind these increases and variations, and to support the development of good practice.”
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