No stooges here

I was taken aback by the ­responses to my letter concerning the named person scheme by Roger Cartwright and Douglas Robin (Letters, 6 June).

Dr Cartwright says that because teachers, health visitors and social workers are mainly public sector employees, they will become government stooges. In making these intemperate remarks, he displays a staggering ignorance and lack of faith in the integrity and commitment of the people who work in these professions. He should be ashamed of himself.

Douglas Robin also says that I “have a naive belief in the public professions who are expected to make the named guardian scheme work”. In the first place, the named persons are not state guardians, as those opposed to the scheme like to overstate. They will be co-ordinating points of contact for children and young people who may need support or protection. As has always been the case, the great majority of children will have no need of them.

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Secondly, having worked for a child protection agency (Children 1st) for 14 years, I can claim a little insight into the calibre of individuals who devote themselves to these professions and who are being maligned by these gentlemen. If someone had said to me that many of these professionals could be positively Bolshie in defence of their principles, I could accept that, but compliant? I don’t think so.

Douglas Turner

Derby Street