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Training & Conferences

The Rise and Rise of Deprivation of Liberty Orders

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Nagalro Autumn Conference on 2 October 2023 09.30 - 1.30

The Rise and Rise of Deprivation of Liberty Orders

Conference Application form

This conference will examine:

  • Applications for DOLs orders
  • Childhood mental health
  • The Impact of racism on mental health


Recently we have seen a steep Rise in the Applications for DOL orders.  This conference hopes to examine not just the significant increase in the numbers of DOL orders being applied for and made, but also the apparently disproportionate number of black children being made the subjects of these orders.

  • Is it a failing that the system fails to appropriately identify the cultural and ethnic backgrounds of children subject to DOL, why wasn’t this a serious consideration for those making applications to the court.
  • Is this a ‘colour blind’ attitude to such far reaching orders which impact children’s Human rights without any right of appeal such as they would have under a mental health section? How does this approach appropriately acknowledge childrens individual needs and allow them to be seen, heard and supported?
  • Does racism have a profound impact on children and young peoples mental health? What if anything can professionals do to buck the trend?

The conference seeks to consider the impact on children and young people, of the failure of professional agencies to adequately identify and support children’s mental health, and to critically analyse the impact of racism on mental health diagnoses; what can we, as professionals, do to support them and their needs? 

To consider the long-term impact and whether these failings and lack of support do contribute to the journey of these young people into the DOL’S orders system, where children with significant mental health issues become marginalised and for whom placements are not available and often ‘bespoke.’  

Conference Chair:  Beverley Barnett-Jones MBE, Associate Director (Practice and Impact) Nuffield Family Justice Observatory

The highly experienced presenters who will challenge and hopefully channel our thinking have been chosen from differing perspectives and include:

  • Dr Harbrinder Dhillon-Stevens. Psychologist and psychotherapist. Expert witness in working with children and families in assessment and therapeutic treatment.
  • Catriona Allan, solicitor, Goodman Ray.
  • Dr Camilla Parker KC (Hon), Just Equality Specialist in children’s mental Health, social justice and human rights.
  • Mary Ryan, Associate, Nuffield Family Justice Observatory Mary is an Associate undertaking research on Deprivation of Liberty Orders.
  • Porsha: A mother's account of her child's experience of a DoL's Order

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