Child Care Protection Officers To Be Sent Home
Two officers attached to the Childcare and Protection Agency will be dismissed while another will simply have her probation period extended a little longer. This was recommended after an internal review was conducted on the agency following the death 16 year old Nessa Gopaul whose body was found in a suitcase at a creek on the Linden Soesdyke Highway.
The young woman’s matter was first reported to the agency in October 2009 by herself and a teacher from Queens College. She complained that she was being physically and sexually abused and forced to conduct illegal acts. After the report was made a caseworker was assigned to the matter and failed to report her findings to her supervisor as she encountered difficulties keeping in contact with the child.
In August of this year the young woman came into contact with the agency once more since a report was made that she was being sexually abused. That report was made by another social worker who was attached to the West Demerara Hospital. Another caseworker was assigned to the child but the officer after failing to make contact with her was told by the previous caseworker to go through her school in order to speak with Gopaul. This was not done by the officer and the girl was reported missing on September 24 after which her body was found on Sunday October 3.
Human Services and Social Security Minister, Priya Manickchand said based on the findings it was evident that the officers were guilty of not following simple protocols and in the case of the third officer she did not execute her managerial post efficiently.
Minister Manickchand said while the agency takes responsibility for its part for not doing enough if anyone is to be blamed it should be the perpetrators.
She highlighted that the sixteen year old after being placed in the care of her grandparents was taken back to her mother.