The association of family assistants held its general meeting Thursday in Verniolle where several problems were raised.
Ariège not in the nails by placing children in overloaded foster families? This is what the association of foster families (AFA) of the department denounces through the voice of its president, Denis Leblond. “The law of 2016 indeed says very clearly that the approval of the family assistant does not authorize him to receive more than three minors, but we have proof that in Ariège, it is not respected. “Placements which are made moreover without checking if the child is compatible with the other children of the foster family or quite simply with the family assistant and without working on his history or on his future”, adds the ‘Ariegeois.
Faced with this situation, the members of the association have decided to give themselves the means to act. “We made an agreement with a lawyer, announced Valérie. Initially, he can intervene to give advice, the consultation is free at this stage, and if you need to initiate proceedings, against the county council for example, she says to the attention of the family assistants present , it will be up to the family assistant to enter it directly. It’s up to you to take action or file a complaint. We are aware that this requires concrete action on your part, but it is also about your professional situation. »
Another problem mentioned by the AFA, “the very strong pressure exerted for several months on our family assistants. There are many examples: all you have to do is oppose a decision or refuse a placement to be summoned. There are also more and more accreditation suspensions being made very quickly, sometimes following complaints, but also simply following reports. Deletions that are made without an investigation being carried out by the county council, which has been demanded for several years. If necessary, host families, overnight, find themselves in the dock. “Summons and suspensions are always against the family assistants and the social workers are never present”, underlines Valérie.
The picture is “a little sad” and his immense anger, insists Denis Leblond who now slips on what for him is “a form of abuse” for the child. “I have in mind the example of a colleague who retired on August 31 and who on that day still had a child at home whom she had been fostering for three years, very disturbed, and she still did not know not where he was supposed to go. Morality, the latter made three or four families before landing in a stable host family. I think we’re destroying child protection. »
The latter also regrets the lack of teamwork. “We know that the basis of our work to succeed in properly welcoming a child is above all teamwork, which is lacking. »
The association pleads for the lines to move in this area. “The problem in Ariège is that we are always in defense of the parents, we always think about promoting the parent-child relationship when we know very well that sometimes, for the child to rebuild himself, he You have to keep it away from the parents, even if it’s temporary, but unfortunately that’s not always our pattern, even though we realize that it’s often to the detriment of the children’s mental health. We have known the situation of a violent father with his son for whom the publicized visits were nevertheless maintained while the latter took several days to recover. So many shadows on the board of a profession which nevertheless intends to mobilize “with the aim of improving its working conditions in the interest of the children we support. »