Hidden men: learning from case reviews

Topics: Case reviews

Summary of risk factors and learning for improved practice around ‘hidden’ men

Men play a very important role in children’s lives and have a great influence on the children they care for. Despite this, they can be ignored by professionals who sometimes focus almost exclusively on the quality of care children receive from their mothers and female carers.

From our analysis of these case reviews, two categories of ‘hidden’ men emerged:

  • men who posed a risk to the child which resulted in them suffering harm
  • men, for example estranged fathers, who were capable of protecting and nurturing the child but were overlooked by professionals.

This briefing is based on case reviews published since 2008 which highlighted the issue of professionals not identifying and/or assessing key men, such as fathers and mothers’ partners, involved in the care of children who died or suffered harm.

Published: March 2015