Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Young and Responsible

There is a new documentary coming up about young carers - children who look after their own parents and households as well as trying to keep up with their school work. The documentary, or at least what I can see from the trailer is about how these kids manage it. The bigger question for me is why we're allowing this to happen in our society. In the trailer there is a brief moment when Melissa - 12 and a carer for her mother who has serious mental health problems and serious mobility problems - says "we tried to get help from social services but they wouldn't do anything".

Why not? What is the point of social services if they don't intervene in cases like this? Basically they've worked out that young children don't know any better and won't make a fuss if they're told that they have to do all the work, so they don't do anything because they can get away with not doing anything. I suspect, I should add, that the actual people who work at SS are run of their feet, but the issue is they don't have enough staff and resources.

This is another thing which could be picked up in my annual questionnaire in schools.

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