Sharon Shoesmith, who was Director of Children's Services in Haringey at the time of the 'Baby P' case, won her appeal against being sacked as a result of the case. I am not concerned with the details of this case - it was a terrible and perhaps avoidable tragedy and I'm sure Ms Shoesmith acted throughout as a professional officer.
My worry is that Ms Shoesmith's denial of accountability for her department's failures serves us, the public, poorly. Let me draw a comparison - and a contrast:
We must now, as you said in the House of Commons, do everything we can to uphold the right of the Islanders to live in peace, to choose their own way of life and to determine their own allegiance. I am sure that this is the right course, and one which deserves the undivided support of Parliament and of the country. But I have concluded with regret that this support will more easily be maintained if the Foreign Office is entrusted to someone else.
I have been privileged to be a member of this Government and to be associated with its achievements over the past three years. I need hardly say that the Government will continue to have my active support. I am most grateful to you personally for the unfailing confidence you have shown in me.