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What did he mean by that? Incendiary Majid Mahmood letter dissected

What did he mean by that? Incendiary Majid Mahmood letter dissected

🕔23.Jul 2013

kettleThe incendiary note from Labour city councillor Majid Mahmood to his colleague and cabinet member Brigid Jones, claiming that Birmingham’s children’s social services are in “meltdown”, has prompted plenty of comment since the contents were revealed by Chamberlain Files.

Mahmood’s letter, emailed to Cllr Jones and fellow councillors, is critical of the departure of Peter Duxbury, the former strategic director for children, young people and families, who left the council by mutual agreement last week after less than 15 months in the job.

In his letter, Cllr Mahmood very firmly defends Mr Duxbury and appears to put the blame for the inadequacy of children’s social services on to “dysfunctional” senior officers who still have their jobs.

This “cohort” of senior managers is incapable of delivering the type of changes envisaged by Mr Duxbury and the fear, according to Cllr Mahmood, is that things will go from bad to worse now that the strategic director has departed.

These claims would be extraordinary under any circumstances, but to be made days after the conclusion of difficult negotiations surrounding Mr Duxbury’s departure raises the ante substantially and makes the contents far more controversial than would otherwise have been the case.

To be fair, Cllr Mahmood did not make the email public. However copies were sent to all other Labour councillors so it should hardly have come as a surprise to anybody when the letter was leaked. Certainly, one found its way to my inbox.

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