History

Child Assessment Report

The father of baby Anthony is not known so far. Chloe Sampson has had a troubled history with relationships, the first one being with the father of Tess when she was only aged 15. When she became pregnant at that age she felt unable to take care of the baby and gave her up to her elder sister. Once she felt she was old enough she took up her mothering responsibility with Tess and made another attempt at proper motherhood especially when the relationship with the non-indigenous Darryl, the father of Tom and James. She took in Darryl’s brother Jacob, who however abused Tess and this resulted in conflict between Chloe and Darryl, ultimately ending up with the breakup of that relationship. The relationship did no end well, and involved physical and verbal abuse from Darryl. She did not handle the breakup well, and took up excessive alcohol consumption and neglected her parental duties for all the three children. When she became pregnant with Anthony she tried to be a better mother but the stress of the pregnancy, when she had high blood pressure and post-partum depression took its toll on her, resulting in her current situation, when she is unable to fully function as a responsible mother to her four children. Tess, at age 11, is hurtling towards teenage and has already had a rough childhood. She is in school but has been unable to concentrate fully on her education due to having to play mother to her siblings as a result of her mother’s circumstance. She has already even at her tender age, had issues with petty theft and alcohol abuse. She yearns for a return back to her aunt’s home where she was able to be a child and she needs to be given that opportunity as if she continues to live with her mother in the current situation her education could be permanently affected. As per theQueensland’s Child Protection Act 1999, a child should, where possible, be placed with a relative so her aunt would certainly qualify (Queensland Child Protection Commission of Inquiry 2012 p.12). Forcing Tess to remain with her mother in what is obviously a toxic environment would be akin to the policies that kept children in harmful situations because of family preservation (Sammut 2013, p.2). Tom and James, who have a non-indigenous father, are also at a crucial time in their childhood where the number one priority should be to ensure that they can go to school without absenteeism and they need some kind of stability in their life. As much as possible child welfare interventions are supposed to be child centred and family focussed (Child Wellbeing 2013). They have already had issues with submitting to authority and any further lack of stability in their home life will have disastrous consequences later on in their lives. Their father, who is at present absent form their lives, needs to be approached to step back in the picture and provide not only a father figure but also be part of the family support structure that the boys need at this stage in their lives. The boys need to be with their mother at their age and there is need for her to get the appropriate support in order to better mother to them but they also do need to make and maintain some connection with their father. It is important that children are placed as much as possible in a situation which respects their often complex culture (Bumblett amp. Lewisa 2007,

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