Care proceedings issued following very recent birth of baby (only a few days old).
Concerns included both parents’ own childhood care, use of drugs, mainly cannabis, and mental health issues.
In pre proceedings parents had agreed to mother and baby being placed together in a mother and baby foster placement but following the birth (by C section) they had changed their minds and wanted mother to return home to the maternal grandmother’s with the baby. The pre proceedings viability assessment of the MGM was negative for an interim placement.
Baby was ready for discharge and the proceedings were issued a very short notice.
At the first hearing the court accepted that the parents and the Guardian had all had insufficient time to read the papers, take instructions and prepare properly for a contested interim hearing.
The hospital agreed mother and baby could remain together in hospital.
The matter was adjourned to the following day and dealt with by a different judge. Prior to the adjourned hearing there was a possibility that mother and baby could live with her step-father, although his own family commitments meant he had limited space and availability to assist for only a few weeks.
The parents were not opposed to a mother and baby placement but their preferred option was still for mother and baby to live with MGM.
After hearing submissions the court agreed with the LA and Guardian that the safest and most appropriate interim placement for such a young baby was in a mother and baby placement with support from the MGM with the transition and very frequent contact with the father.