Monday, 11 May 2009


Lets go back to what this charade began with and it was my husband giving my son a couple of smacks with an open hand around the side of his head as a result of the unacceptable behaviour of my son. My son had racially abused a young girl, spat in her face and was hitting her and pulled her jacket away from her and threw it on some scaffolding.

This type of punishment (a smack) is rarely used by us (and not something I personally condone), however in extreme circumstances it can prove to be the shock needed to curbe the offending behaviour and quite frankly my son's behaviour was offensive and illegal. The punishment he received must have served as a shock to my son (not really ever having a smack before) to go running around school the next day saying he had been beaten up.

Now as a defence my husband used the defence of reasonable corporal punishment. It failed, so below I have reproduced article 79 of the 2002 Children's Law (Jersey). This explains the limitation of the use of this defence:

79 Limitation of defence of reasonable corporal punishment
(1) Any defence of reasonable corporal punishment of a child shall only be available to a person who was at the time of the punishment –
(a) a person with parental responsibility for the child; or
(b) a person without parental responsibility for the child who –
(i) is the father or relative of the child;
(ii) had care of the child; and
(iii) had the consent of a person with parental responsibility for the child to administer such punishment.
(2) Any defence of reasonable corporal punishment of a child shall not be available if the punishment involved any means other than the use of a hand.

Bearing this in mind, it really does make me wonder if his lawyer knew the law. Maybe if we could have afforded a lawyer who was actually going to represent my husband, perhaps the outcome would have been different.

My current stance remains the result of needing the recognition of what actually happened, and the fact all that happened was just a couple of smacks, nothing more nothing less. We don't need any 'help' from them. Unless this happens, as my mum says, and I agree, my son would have my husband over a barrel and what do we do live on egg shells waiting for the next time he does something like this? What would the SS do then? I will not put my family in that position, I love them all too much.

The one question remaining with me is does my husband's actions justify the way we have been villified by Social Services?


Anonymous said...

No. I think you and your family have been villified by SS.

TonyTheProf said...

I remember reading that article in the JEP and thinking it was extraordinary that no legal action etc seems to have been taken against your son for the racial abuse he heaped on the girl. From what the JEP said, it looks as if the lesson he was taught by the intervention of Social Services was that he was "untouchable" as far as your or your husband's ability to restrain him in any kind of racist abuse went.

One Day said...

TonyTheProf you are totally right with what you are saying. The little girl's mother was going to press charges against my son, then she found out what was happening to us with Social Services and did not want to cause us anymore trouble. Along with what he did that night (and he had also assaulted her earlier on that night- separate witness evidence), he also sent her a number of not-so-nice text messages which upset her further. That little girl had been through alot that year, and the actions of my son are quite frankly disgusting. But apparently Social Services think that this behaviour is acceptable, then they have the cheek to blame parents for the creation of the untouchables!

Anonymous said...

Believe you me you have my every sympathy. You cannot win with the SS or Children's Service here and my experiences go back quite some years now.

I had a young teenage daughter who was totally beyond control despite a nice home and upbringing.

Looking older than her years, and wanting to behave the same way, at 13 she was boasting of sleeping with a much older boy to her peers at school, staying out all night, even getting into nightclubs until we could find where she was and drag her out. We had to get SS involved and the result was that they said 'this was normal behaviour for a teenager!'

We were subjected to a few years of nightmare behaviour, and she was 'pussyfooted' around by the Children's Service.

Believe you me I have every sympathy with you and your husband, especially in this day and age. Sadly children seem to know their 'rights', whereas parents seem to have very few. This must have been a most distressing episode for you.

One Day said...

It is still carrying on, shame I have had to learn to be a good lawyer pretty quickly, (at any rate I am not doing any worse than the professionals we have paid for so far). This is a situation that simply should not have turned out the way it has. It is difficult to clear your name even when you have done nothing wrong, I get tuts and sighs when I speak but I will not be bullied by them, I will stand up for the truth and my beliefs even if it gets me nowhere I know I have tried my best to reunite my family.

Anonymous said...

One Day, you can safely say that the lawyers do not know what they are saying and acting on.

Have you asked for an independant assessment of your situation - I asked for an independant assessment of my daughter as there was far too much "conflict of interest" over here. They still choose not to act on this, but I will fight !

If your son was so much at risk from your husband why were the other children not removed ? The power of the voice of the child is so much greater in the Children's Law is so much higher than a responsible parent.

Keep strong, keep appealing and one day, One Day you will get justice and your son back.

How can "we" allow the abuse and suicides of those who have suffered at those proven to have abused, when the action of a father in delivering a legal sanction for inappropriate behaviour warrents the child being removed from his home and affecting so many people's lives.

The law and people servicing the law is/are inappropriate.

If you would like to chat, do email me - our issues are not too dissimilar - we need strength to fight for the welfare of our kids xx

One Day said...

Hi, if you post a comment 'not for publication' with your email address, I will get in touch!

Thank you.