Peterborough social worker struck off after lying to foster carers

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A Peterborough social worker told foster carers that their children would be taken away if they didn’t write a letter to his manager saying how supportive he was, a hearing was told.

Paul Baden has been kicked out of the profession after spinning a number of lies to the foster carers including that he was a trained solicitor and had been a psychologist for 16 years.

Baden, who worked for the Looked After Children’s Team at Peterborough City Council, also told colleagues that he only had six weeks to live.

A Health & Care Professionals Council panel has found that Baden’s actions amount to misconduct and threw him out of the profession.

Baden had asked a couple who were foster carers to write a letter advising his manager how ‘supportive’ he was and that he was ‘supporting (them) in every way’.

He then threatened that the couple would lose the children in their care if they did not do as he said.

The panel heard from one of the foster carers how he and his wife felt ‘gutted’ and ‘horrible’ after Baden’s suggestion.

Between his employment as part of the Looked After Children’s Team, between 1 August 2012 and 17 January 2013, Baden also lied to the foster carers on several occasions.

He told them that he was a qualified solicitor, that he had been a psychologist for 16 years and that he had previously set up a clinic in London dealing with Foetal Drug Syndrome.

The same poor couple were also subject to belittling from Baden as he told them he would write to them in ‘simple terms’.

It was also found proved that while on a training course Baden had told two separate colleagues that he had only six weeks or two months to live.

When he was asked if this statement was true he simply laughed in the face of his colleague.

Baden has been cleared of several other charges against him including claims that he had called a service user overweight and and that if she lost weight she would stop having epileptic fits.

The panel found that Baden has shown no insight whatsoever as to his past professional failings and that he has displayed deep seated attitudinal issues.

They also found that Baden carried out an abuse of his power as a social worker and that if he were to return to practice there is a high risk of repetition of behaviour that would be harmful to members of the public.

Baden refused to attend the final part of the hearing as he believes that the HCPC case against him, at least in part, is founded on fabrication and amounts to perverting of the course of justice.

In a letter sent to the panel, Baden said: ‘For the panel, the decision is erroneous and the matters for two years have not been dealt with .

‘Facts have been fabricated and there are omissions of facts.

‘Concealing and destroying evidence is a perverting the course of justice I refer the panel to my emails setting out the facts as serious concerns of farce process.

‘As I pre-warned if the FARCE continues and matter continues not to dealt with in open, honest, transparent and fair process, preventing (or perverting) the course of justice, then I cannot take part until it dealt with by an Independent Investigation.’

Baden has now been struck off the register and will be informed of this decision in writing.