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Who is running one's life - certainly not you!


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Hereford Times News 20th November 2014

 
A MOTHER cleared of trying to poison her daughter is pleading with the authorities to reunite the pair.
 
Mary Kidson has not seen her 16-year-old for seven months, after the teen was taken into care when her mother was jailed ahead of her trial.
 
The 56-year-old, from Ledbury, was acquitted of giving her daughter unnecessary medication this month following a three-week trial.
 
But she has been left furious at the actions of Herefordshire Council, who she accuses of ruining her child’s life.
 
“I just want my daughter home,†said Ms Kidson. “I haven’t seen her since April and am only allowed a 15-minute phone conversation every fortnight.â€
 
She says the council has let her family down throughout the process, starting by not telling her that concerns had been raised about her care of her daughter.
 
“Why Herefordshire Council acted as they did is still totally unbelievable and completely out of order,†she said.
 
“They have ruined my daughter’s life and torn our family apart.â€
 
Ms Kidson, who specialises in helping children develop reading, language and learning skills, said her daughter has a history of health issues including a form of general dyspraxia, plus speech problems and weight issues.
 
She went to NHS doctors in search of a cure but said they couldn’t help her child, leading to her looking online.
 
This led to her and her daughter visiting a doctor in Brussels, Dr Thierry Hertoghe, who prescribed the youngster with medication not offered by the NHS doctors, causing a “dramatic improvement†in her condition.
 
“In her own words, she felt better than ever,†said Ms Kidson. “Her speech issue had gone.â€
 
The first Ms Kidson knew of any problem was in March 2013 when police and social services arrested her before taking her daughter away.
 
“It was a huge shock and totally out of the blue,†she said, adding she later learned the girl’s father, to who she is estranged, had sent letters to health professionals citing concerns over her treatment.
 
“I just wish he had told me,†she said. “My daughter just wanted to be fit and well.â€
 
She was later charged and remanded in custody from April this year.
 
However, she says her time in prison wasn’t as bad as first feared. She became a maths mentor helping out fellow inmates, and says she struck up friendships with others inside.
 
But she admits the thought of spending 10 years behind bars, the maximum sentence should she have been convicted, was “horrendousâ€.
 
“When I heard about the acquittal, I sobbed my heart out,†she said.
 
Since being cleared, a friend of hers launched an online petition calling for the mother and daughter to be reunited.
 
It has already attracted almost 2,000 signatures.
 
Ms Kidson says she has gained a great deal of solace knowing people have supported her throughout her ordeal.
 
A Herefordshire Council spokeswoman said the authority is aware of the petition.
 
“Decisions on placing a child in care and ending a period of care are taken by the family court, not the council,†she added.
 
“The family court reaches its decisions after considering evidence presented by a range of experts and interested parties, including parents and the young person involved.
 
“The council is in contact with both parents about the next steps.â€
 
* A court order that was made ahead of the trial prevented the press from naming Ms Kidson's child but ruled that she can be identified as her daughter.

 

Slowly society is moving into a world of police state regulation, after considering evidence presented by a range of experts and interested parties. In Scotland it is planned that every child will have a dedicated social worker to keep an eye on the parents. And Herefordshire Council expect us to believe that they didn't instigate proceedings and present evidence to a secret court - it just happened, but then if anything goes wrong, there is no one to blame is there.
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Mindful that not all facts may be in the public arena, two questions do spring to mind.

 

The first and obvious one, is why it is taking so long for this mother to be reunited with her child, when she has been cleared of any wrong doing.

 

The second, is why this child was ever placed within the care system in the first place. Why wasn't she placed with her father, who is the person who initially raised concerns?

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  • 2 weeks later...
5th December in Hereford Times News

 
A COUNTY mum is calling for a change in the rules surrounding term-time holidays after returning home to receive a £120 fine.
 
Becky Bloomfield, 35, organised a family holiday to Majorca for her children, Kris, 13, and Sophie, 10, to spend time with their grandfather, Ken, who was undergoing chemotherapy for bowel cancer.
 
Both schools, Queen Elizabeth Humanities College in Bromyard and Brockhampton Academy refused permission for the pupils to take the holiday in term time as it did not fall into guidelines for “special circumstancesâ€.
 
Challenging the decision, Mrs Bloomfield told the school she still intended to travel and booked the holiday to Majorca in July.
 
But the family soon received the devastating news that their ‘pops’ had around three months to live, after suffering several seizures as a side effect from harsh chemotherapy and was not well enough to travel with them.
 
“It devastated us he was such a big part of our lives,†said Mrs Bloomfield.
 
“As a family we discussed this and he was keen we went on without him, not a decision we made lightly, but as parents we decided that having to tell the children that they couldn’t travel with nanny and granddad was hard enough without telling them they couldn’t go at all.â€
 
Sadly, on September 25, the children’s granddad died.
 
But the family was not only left to deal with their grief but also faced a £120 fine issued by Herefordshire Council.
 
“I refused to pay as I strongly feel I had special circumstances for taking my children out of school.
 
I have now been threatened with court action. My intention is to fight this,†added Mrs Bloomfield.
 
A spokesman at Brockhampton Primary School said the school follows government guidelines in relation to term-time holidays.
 
In a statement, Queen Elizabeth Humanities College said it is not able to comment on specific reasons why leave is either granted or refused.

 

Your life in their hands. No wonder people are getting fed up with these transformed individuals who think they are here to control our existence. The council is about as sensitive as a two inch plank - it is they that need to get a life and some understanding and stop ticking the boxes. 

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Good grief.

 

Where is the compassion, the care.....the common sense??

 

I am at a loss as to why this wouldn't be deemed "special circumstances."

 

If the children usually have good attendance, then this surely should have been granted. I understand that it is at the discretion of Head teachers what constitutes "special circumstances." Perhaps they could be asked  to clarify what reasons they would consider fell into this category. 

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  • 1 month later...
  • 1 month later...

Interview on BBC Radio Hereford & Worcester today concerning Mary Kidson's situation, regarding her daughter still under the supervision of Herefordshire Council, nearly six months after being aquitted of any offences against her. Not a pleasant story.

 

Interview starts here at 1:36:40  29 days left to listen.

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  • 3 months later...

I do not know what the outcome was in Mary Kidson's case above, but the Council is now threatening another parent.

 

The couple first learned of the gravity of the situation when they were contacted by Herefordshire council.
 
Jackie said: 'We got a letter with big red letters saying "interview under caution". We had to go to a police and criminal evidence interview with the education legal officer and we were strongly advised to get a solicitor.'
 
The couple were charged with causing a child to not attend school regularly between 6 November and 28 November, contrary to Sec 144(1) of the Education Act 1996.
 
The couple went to court on 16 June and their case has been adjourned until 9 November.  

 

More good work by our caring council. If the mother is jailed this will be far more damaging for the child than missing a few weeks of education. Maybe we can introduce compulsory attendance at council meetings for councillors with fines and jail for missing meetings.
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The parent obviously won't go to jail here. System is not flexible enough to cater for an 'educational' element worked into the absence .... 

 

The rule is just a blanket rule. To probably having to avoid 'means testing' every excuse going for a week off. 

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In fairness, she shouldn't have done it.

It does seem a little heavy handed, but the parent knew it was wrong and was expecting to be fined, so clearly didn't care about taking her child out of school in term-time.  Now she has to deal with her actions.

Maybe it is over the top from the Council, but, where do they draw the line?  People would be up in arms if the school/council had known a parent had taken a child out of school for several weeks at a time and yet did nothing.

The school/Children's Services have a duty of care to the children they look after, there are some rather bad parents around, and without investigation how are they to know whether a prolonged absence is innocent or not?

I'm sure after the meeting/investigation all will be cleared up...

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