We hear a lot of talk about human rights at the moment. Norfolk parents Mark & Nicky Webster had their three children taken away from them after they were accused of abusing their children. Norfolk Social Services took the children away and they were subsequently adopted by another couple. It transpired that the abuse allegations turned out to be false.
In law, adoption orders are final. It is impossible to overturn them, so despite a miscarriage of justice has taken place, there is no legal recourse to overturn the adoption order. The stability and security of the children is considered paramount and supercedes any natural parental rights. You can read a full account of this terrible story HERE. There was a 12 minute discussion of this on the Today Programme this morning, involving the couple's lawyer and Lisa Christensen, Norfolk County Council's Director of Social Services.
The law has clearly failed the natural parents here. Can one think of anything worse than a) being falsely accused of child abuse and b) finding out that the law prevents you not only from ever caring for your children again, but from ever seeing them again? I certainly can't.
There is no simple solution here. Can one really have two different levels of adoption? I don't know. But the case clearly shows that the system has failed these parents, and it is incumbent on politicians and the children's authorities to come up with a solution.