Lisa's family were not told they were categorised as troubled. She is dismayed when she hears the programme's title.
"I think it's an insult – just the name. It makes you sound as if people should keep away from you, because you are trouble. You wonder how they came up with that name," she says, adding that she would have told Cusack to "get stuffed" if she had told her.And then there’s Emma, who is probably just feckless, but gets to blame ‘depression’ for this:
She is grateful for the support she has had from the programme – help with housing, with schools and encouragement to get treatment for her depression. New schools have been found for the children and they no longer have a child protection plan, so are not in danger of being removed. But she says she had spent months asking social services to help her and wonders if there is something wrong with a system that makes you wait until crisis point before it steps in to help.
"You have to do something bad before you get this support. You don't get it until you do something serious."Personally, I think there’s something wrong with a system that regards this as ‘help’.
But CiF and all the charities waiting to take over some of Cusack's work - for a large government grant, of course! - simply point to perceived savings, as if that was the only thing that mattered:
An official calculation of how much Cusack's work with Estelle's family has saved the state will only be done once her work there has finished.
However, she has fed data for an earlier case into an official computerised system for ascertaining how much the work has saved and come up with an estimated saving of £427,195 a year – taking into account the previous annual cost of arrests, police visits, prison stints, antisocial behaviour orders, ambulance callouts and drug counselling.There is, however, no estimation for the cost of the damage being done to society by encouraging State dependant families to continue on their merry way with a taxpayer-funded 'parent' installed to keep a check on them, is there?
Some will object to the classification of these people as 'Philpott families', pointing out that they haven't killed anyone (yet). But that's ALL that separates them. Isn't it?
And we see that we have no shortage of people like them. We see it in the news that families in Gosport decided to 'celebrate' the funeral of a former stateswoman by burning her in effigy. She, you see, is the 'cause' of their plight, not their inability to recognise that the world has changed, and they too must change. We see it in the news that a trial had to be abandoned because another child-adult cannot grasp the basic concept of justice (but would no doubt howl should that same fate be visited upon him). We see it in the news that one of the Thatcher 'death party' organisers has, in fact, benefited from the very policies that she claims to have despised, and what's more, thinks that won't be uncovered.
We have a generation engineered to never grow up. A Neoteny Generation. And it's growing.