Richard Webster (author) - Works - The Great Children's Home Panic

The Great Children's Home Panic (1998) discusses police investigation of sexual abuse in Britain. Christian Wolmar writes that in Webster's view "there is a grave risk of injustice against care workers because there are financial incentives for people to make false claims", and that police have encouraged alleged victims to come forward by suggesting that they may obtain damages. Wolmar states that while the police initially referred people to lawyers, they are now reluctant to do this, as it has enabled defence lawyers to undermine the credibility of witnesses, and that many of those who make successful claims through Cica lose much of the award. According to Wolmar, while Webster sees claims to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (Cica) as vulnerable to abuse because of its low standards of proof, lawyers acting on behalf of victims observe that even making claims to Cica is painful. He cites solicitor Bilhar Singh Uppal as arguing that while Webster is right to open debate, there has been no wholesale fabrication of evidence.

Damian Thompson writes that in Webster's view "investigations into child abuse in care homes in the early 1990s were disfigured by the zealotry associated with the Ritual Satanic Abuse affair".

Chris Beckett writes that while Webster accepts that abuse occurs, he considers many convictions against former residential workerers miscarriages of justice and sees them as similar to witch-hunts. Beckett sees Webster's case against the widespread belief that the residential care system was infiltrated by paedophile rings as well-argued. According to Beckett, Webster argues that police procedures in North Wales dangerously reverse normal police methods, by starting with suspects and then interviewing large numbers of people to find out whether a crime was committed; this process is flawed since former residents of residential homes may have motives to make false accusations.

Read more about this topic:  Richard Webster (author), Works

Famous quotes containing the words home and/or children:

    Obscurest night involv’d the sky,
    Th’ Atlantic billows roar’d,
    When such a destin’d wretch as I,
    Wash’d headlong from on board,
    Of friends, of hope, of all bereft,
    His floating home for ever left.
    William Cowper (1731–1800)

    If women’s role in life is limited solely to housewife/mother, it clearly ends when she can no longer bear more children and the children she has borne leave home.
    Betty Friedan (20th century)