Dr. Liz Davies – Whistleblower – Social Worker (1986-92)


An account of Liz Davies’  role as a professional social worker employed to protect children is well described in a Guardian Article. Liz worked in Islington between 1986 and 1992  in 4 neighbourhood offices, Rosedale, Beaumont Rise, Clocktower and Irene Watson. At Irene Watson office she worked with the neighbourhood officer social services (NOSS) David Cofie and together they investigated the abuse of children both within the community and in the children’s homes. They first reported their concerns in 1990 and with professionals from other key agencies such as health, education, police and probation, completed 15 reports for senior management as well as for the Area Child Protection Committee. Some of their investigations were closed down and, after Liz left the authority, she reported her concerns to police at Scotland Yard. Later, extensive media coverage led to 13 Inquiries. The final Inquiry in 1995 found no evidence of organised abuse networks although she had identified over 60 children who were victims of an abuse network.  She has continued over 27 years to investigate what happened to vulnerable children in Islington’s care, and since 2014 has coordinated Islington Survivors Network . On 28th September 2017 she spoke for the first time at an Islington Council Meeting and received an apology from the council leader Richard Watts. This was reported in the Islington Gazette here.

Liz left Islington in 1992 when instructed to place a 7 year old boy into a foster placement which she had reported as abusive. She then worked in the London Borough of Harrow for 11 years as child protection manager and trainer and from 2002 taught social work at London Metropolitan University. Liz is a registered social worker and an Emeritus Professor of Social Work at London Metropolitan University. Her books about child protection are listed on her website https://lizdavies.net

Liz in 1990 when working as a senior social worker in Irene Watson Neighbourhood Office Islington

Here is the report to the Irene Watson Neighbourhood Office Forum presented by Liz Davies on 23th April 1990 – very faded but her entire archive of evidence was lost by her professional lawyer and this is the only copy available. This was the first time the issues of child sexual exploitation in the locality were raised with the local councillor for this neighbourhood office – Margaret Hodge. her response is below.

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