This blog is for everyone who uses words.

The ordinary-sized words are for everyone, but the big ones are especially for children.



Thursday, 13 August 2015

Socially aware: a rant

Poor Tina Pugh.

Ms Pugh is a social worker who's been working on a very sad case which involves two little girls taken from their parents by Social Services.

A friend of the family has offered to look after the children, but Ms Pugh's belief is that the children would be best off adopted.

The case has come before the courts for a judge to pass, well, judgement, and in the end the children have been allowed to stay with the family friend.

And upon what grounds did His Honour Judge Jeremy Lea base his decision?

It was on the grounds that her report was written in such impenetrable language that even Mr Lea wasn't sure what she meant. Furthermore, he was sure that the family friend, who was trying to argue in favour of herself being given custody of the children, wouldn't have had a chance of understanding Miss Pugh at all.

And if the family friend couldn't understand Ms Pugh's statement, how could the family friend argue her own case?

Judge Lea said:

'I have to question whether Tina Pugh was able to communicate orally with [the family friend]. Did [the family friend] fully understand what was being asked of her or said to her?

'This was not a matter of linguistic pedantry, but a serious failing in those involved in making crucial decisions.

'How could any unqualified person be expected to know what imbued with ambivalence meant? Or having many commonalities emanating from their histories? Or even I asked her to convey a narrative?

'There were passages in Tina Pugh's report,' said the judge, 'which were written in language which made their meaning quite opaque. I suspect as far as [the family friend] was concerned, these passages might just as well have been written in a foreign language.

'Reports by experts are not written solely for the benefit of other professionals.

'I conclude that there is at least a possibility here that the negative assessment of [the family friend] stemmed in part from the fact that Tina Pugh and [the family friend] were simply not on the same wavelength when discussing matters.'

And that was the judgement of the judge.

I hereby acclaim His Honour Judge Jeremy Lea a Hero of The Word Den.

All rise for the judge!

Word To Use Today: hero. This word comes from the Latin word hērōs. Before that it was Greek and meant (as well as hero) a demi-god. Before that it might come from a Proto-Indo-European word to do with protecting and watching over.



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