Children where Arthur Labinjo-Hughes lived are being ‘harmed’ due to delayed services, Ofsted says

Children in town where Arthur Labinjo-Hughes lived are being ‘significantly harmed’ due to delay in responses from ‘inadequate’ council services, Ofsted says

  • Ofsted inspection said that children in Solihull aren’t getting the help they need
  • They ruled that the services provided to children and families were inadequate 
  • The report identified ‘serious’ and ‘widespread’ failings across services 
  • Arthur Labinjo-Hughes was killed in 2020 by his father and stepmother
  • The 6-year-old was deprived of food and made to stand for 14 hours a day

Children in Solihull, where Arthur Labinjo-Hughes lived before he was brutally murdered, are experiencing ‘significant harm’ due to delayed council services, an Ofsted report has found.

An inspection of Solihull local authority children’s services which took place in November last year found that they were ‘inadequate’. 

The report says that delays in response had led to children experiencing ‘significant harm’.   

Arthur Labinjo-Hughes was repeatedly tortured by his father Thomas Hughes and his stepmother Emma Tustin.

He was killed by Tustin and Hughes at their home in Solihull in June 2020. 

The child was murdered as a result of having his head banged ‘repeatedly against a hard surface’ by Tustin. 

Arthur Labinjo-Hughes, from Solihull, was killed by his father Thomas Hughes and his stepmother Emma Tustin in June 2020 at their home

Arthur Labinjo-Hughes, from Solihull, was killed by his father Thomas Hughes and his stepmother Emma Tustin in June 2020 at their home

Arthur, six, was deprived of food, made to stand for 14 hours a day and poisoned with salt

Arthur, six, was deprived of food, made to stand for 14 hours a day and poisoned with salt

The six-year-old was deprived of food, made to stand for 14 hours a day and poisoned with salt.

In the last service inspection, conducted in 2019 before Arthur’s death, they were ranked ‘requires improvement to be good’. 

However, the report said the quality and impact of social work across all areas have ‘significantly deteriorated’ since that time. 

The report also stated that leaders and partners ‘did not have an accurate understanding of the poor quality of practice and experiences of children.’

It also said that when there is concern about a child who is at risk of harm, the response is ‘too slow’.

Thomas Hughes (right) was jailed for a minimum of 24 years and Emma Tustin (left) was jailed for a minimum of 29 years

Thomas Hughes (right) was jailed for a minimum of 24 years and Emma Tustin (left) was jailed for a minimum of 29 years

The services in Solihull were ranked 'inadequate' in all four areas from their November inspection by Ofsted

The services in Solihull were ranked ‘inadequate’ in all four areas from their November inspection by Ofsted 

The last recorded moments of Arthur Labinjo-Hughes showed he struggled to pick his duvet up from the floor, where he had been forced to sleep for days on end, just hours before he was brutally murdered. He screamed ‘no one loves me’.

Hughes was jailed for a minimum of 24 years, after having his sentence increased by three years, and Tustin was jailed for a minimum of 29 years in December 2021.

The report, which was published on Friday, details that much improvement is needed, including: ‘The timeliness and quality of decision-making in relation to concerns received about children and allocation to a social worker to ensure that children are seen without delay.’

The FOUR missed chances to save little Arthur: How authorities IGNORED pleas about six-year-old boy’s welfare from THREE family members and his teacher 

ONE – Arthur’s grandmother, Joanne Hughes, called social services on April 16 2020 to say she had seen the youngster covered in bruises. However, social workers failed to spot them during a visit to his home.

TWO – On April 20, Joanne also told Arthur’s school what she had seen. A member of staff called social services but was told the bruises had been caused by ‘play’.

THREE – Arthur’s uncle, Daniel Hughes, reports his concerns to police but is threatened with arrest if he tries to go back to the youngster’s home.

FOUR – John Dutton, Emma Tustin’s stepfather, makes an anonymous call to social services weeks before Arthur’s death.

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