Emergency Protection: the impact of court control on safeguarding children

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review


An analysis of the impact of local court practices and decisions of the High Court (XCC v B (EPO) [2004] EWHC 2015 (fam); Re X (EPO) [2006] EWHC 510 (Fam))on the use of emergency protection orders and police protection powers. Data on admission of children to local authority care from 1994-2009 shows a gradual rise in the number of children admitted under these provisions with the proportion admitted under EPOs declining from 2000 and more markedly from 2006. There was also a decline in both types of admission following the introduction of the new processes for care proceedings (the PLO) in 2008. The paper discusses the consequences of these changes in practice for children and families, professionals with child protection responsibilities and the role of the court. Increasing the requirements for court orders has led to reliance on police powers. Neither heavy court process or reliance on the courts are likely to be sustainable after substantial public spending cuts. This are of law provides a salutary example of the impact of reform imposed on a complex system by the Judiciary.
Translated title of the contributionEmergency Protection: the impact of court control on safeguarding children
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1088 - 1093
Number of pages6
JournalFamily Law
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2010

Bibliographical note

Publisher: Jordan Publishing Ltd

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