”Vad ska vi ´lilla socialtjänsten´ säga när rätten har beslutat” - En kvalitativ studie om socialsekreterares uppfattningar gällande fallet ”Lilla hjärtat”
Sammanfattning: The study aimed to research some social workers in the department of children and families services' view of the case “Lilla hjärtat” and the dilemmas of the case. This case, a 4-year old girl who died in the care of her parents, is well known in Sweden through the media, and the case has led to a public inquiry. The study was a case study based on seven semi-structured qualitative interviews with social workers in six different departments of children and families services. The interviews were held through a video conference service called Zoom. During the process of analysing the material, the theory of street-level bureaucrats and the concept of discretion were used. The conclusion of the study was that the task of social workers in children and families services is complex and that the respondents have different views of their level of discretion. The respondents also were of the opinion that parents' rights dominate in the court, both in general and in this specific case. The social workers in the study expressed that the best interests of the child should be the primary consideration. In the study, the respondents showed sympathy with the fact that the social workers in the case felt powerless after the court order, but despite that regard, they are still convinced that social workers have to keep on fighting for the child. The social workers expressed that their discretion is limited by the laws, the competence of the courts, time frames, high workload, court orders et cetera. Some of the respondents expressed a desire for a few laws to be changed, but others disagreed and emphasized that it's about how to use the laws and the discretion.
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