Presentation on theme: "The London Child Protection Procedures 3 rd Edition, 2007."— Presentation transcript:
The London Child Protection Procedures 3 rd Edition, 2007
The London Child Protection Procedures… Are a joint initiative by: Metropolitan Police London Directors of Childrens Services Chairs of London LSCBs NHS London London Councils London Probation They are developed by: The London Safeguarding Children Board on behalf of the 32 London Local Safeguarding Children Boards (LSCBs)
Safeguarding children is everyones responsibility Accordingly, the 3 rd edition of the Procedures: Aims to translate government legislation and guidance into practical procedures and advice to support everyone working with children and/or parents (frontline practitioners or professionals, volunteers and people involved with community and faith groups) and their management, to identify a child at risk of harm and explain what to do if a child is in need of services to safeguard and promote his/her welfare.
Agency responsibilities All agencies who work with or have contact with children must review their child safeguarding procedures to ensure that they comply with the London Child Protection Procedures. When additional policies are required, these must complement the London Procedures. All agencies must ensure staff have awareness and understanding of the procedures and recognise their relevance All workers must have access to a named person within their agency who understands the procedures and is competent in working with them
Using the procedures The procedures are intended to be used as a directory, with professionals accessing the section they need as appropriate. This requires that all staff are sufficiently familiar with the document to know where to look Aids to this are: A section called: Quick Guide to using the Procedures Detailed contents pages at the front of each section Cross-referencing Easy electronic access and the facility to download each section separately
User friendly The procedures are significantly expanded and cover a wide range of issues that London Boroughs face. The largest area of expansion is Chapter 5 – providing professionals with procedures for Children in Specific Circumstances (C.I.S.C.) The procedures can be downloaded from hyperlinks make the procedures easily accessible and user friendly
5. Children in specific circumstances (cisc) 5.1 Introduction - new 5.2 Animal abuse and links to abuse of children and vulnerable adults - new 5.3 Begging 5.4 Blood-borne viruses - new 5.5 Boarding school - new 5.6 Bullying - new 5.7 Custodial settings for children - new 5.8 Custodial settings (children visiting) 5.9 Diplomats families 5.10 Disabled children 5.11 Domestic violence 5.12 Fabricated or induced illness Procedures contents
5. Children in specific circumstances (cisc) 5.13 Female genital mutilation 5.14 Firesetting - new 5.15 Forced marriage of a child 5.16 Foreign exchange visits 5.17 Foster care - new 5.18 Harming others 5.19 Historical abuse 5.20 Honour based violence 5.21 Hospitals - new 5.22 Hospitals (specialist) - new 5.23 Information and communication technology (ICT) based forms of abuse - new Procedures contents
5. Children in specific circumstances (cisc) 5.24 Left alone - new 5.25 Male circumcision - new 5.26 Missing families for whom there are concerns for children or unborn children 5.27 Missing from care and home 5.28 Not attending school - new 5.29 Parental mental illness 5.30 Parents with learning disabilities 5.31 Parents who misuse substances 5.32 Pregnancy and motherhood for a child 5.33 Pre-trial therapy - new Procedures contents
5. Children in specific circumstances (cisc) 5.34 Private fostering - new 5.35 Psychiatric care for children - new 5.36 Psychiatric wards and facilities (children visiting) 5.37 Residential care - new 5.38 Self-harming and suicidal behaviour 5.39 Sexually active children 5.40 Sexually exploited children 5.41 Spirit possession or witchcraft - new 5.42 Surrogacy - new 5.43 Trafficked and exploited children 5.44 Young carers Procedures contents
5. Children in specific circumstances (cisc) Additional procedures: 5.45 Accessing information from abroad 5.46 Criminal injuries compensation 5.47 Working with interpreters / communication facilitators Procedures contents
Supplementary procedures These form part of the London Child Protection Procedures, and are all summarised and cross-referenced in section 5 (cisc). They are all new: Safeguarding Children Abused through Domestic Violence Safeguarding Children Missing from Care and Home Safeguarding Trafficked and Exploited Children Safeguarding Children Abused through Sexual Exploitation Safeguarding Sexually Active Children Safeguarding Children at Risk of Abuse through FGM Safeguarding Children Missing from School Procedures contents
6. Referral and assessment Section 6 includes: 6.4 Indicator table - new This is a table providing a guide to the difference within LA childrens social care between a s47 core assessment and an initial assessment. The table is intended as a guide and is not exhaustive 6.9 Quick referral flowchart - new This flowchart shows the pathway for a referral, from a professional having initial concerns through to the eventual referral to LA childrens social care Procedures contents
10. Working with Unco-operative Families Section 10 is new. Its incorporation into the procedures reflects the finding from the review of London serious case reviews that working with unco-operative families is a skill which professionals need support with Procedures contents
12. Unexpected death of a child Section 12 is new. It is taken from Working Together to Safeguard Children 2006, and from April 2008 it will be replaced by a supplementary procedure outlining the London response to all child deaths 13. Risk management of known offenders Section 13 is new. It has been written with significant input from the Youth Justice Board, London Youth Offending Teams, the London Probation Service, the Met Police and LA childrens social care Procedures contents
14. Organised and complex abuse Section 14 has been significantly expanded, using information from Complex Child Abuse investigations: Inter-Agency Issues, HO and DH 2002 Procedures contents
Appendices 1: Statutory Framework - new 2: Childrens Safeguarding Recommendations - new 3: Voluntary Agencies Keeping Children Safe - new 4: Information Sharing Legal Framework - new 5: Framework for the Assessment of Need for Children and their Families - new 6: Use of Questionnaires and Scales - new 7: Missing Persons Notification Proforma - new 8: Acronyms - new Procedures contents
Supplementary procedures The supplementary procedures are available electronically, together with the main London Child Protection Procedures, from the London Boards website: They, and the main London procedures, can also be posted onto an agencys intranet. Procedures contents
Contact Numbers Police Childrens Right Officers (NCH) or Out of hours Social Care Child Protection Officer (Schools or Education settings) Child Protection Nurse Advisor (Health) Education Law advice line Childrens Legal Centre Tel: Fax:
The London Child Protection Procedures 3 rd Edition, 2007
Roles and Responsibilities Safeguarding children is everyones responsibility
Safeguarding Children Professionals in all agencies that work with children and / or adults who have parenting responsibilities share a commitment to safeguard and promote their welfare, and for many agencies this is underpinned by a statutory duty or duties
Needs of the child Information from serious case reviews continues to highlight that, when faced with the complex circumstances of a childs life, professionals find it difficult to keep the focus on the child and the key elements which should contribute to ensuring his / her safety. Professionals should consider regularly checking their actions against this checklist as a good practice prompt:
Good practice checklist Have you been able to speak to the child alone? Can you still do so? Where will the child be for the next 24 hours? Is the child at immediate risk of harm (physical, sexual, emotional)? What information do you have about the child and their family? Have you completed a CAF or equivalent? Are there other children (siblings, peers) who could be at risk of harm? Is the mother at risk of harm? Do she and the child/ren have a safety plan? Is it safe to discuss your concerns with the childs parents – or will doing so put the child at greater risk of harm?
Good practice checklist Is there a reason that makes it likely that the child will resist efforts to safeguard him/her (e.g. fear of a pimp, need for drugs)? Have you recorded everything that has been said to you by the child, the parents / family, and other professionals? Have you recorded everything you have said to others? Is there disagreement between health staff about the diagnosis of non-accidental injury? If there is, it must be resolved before the child is allowed home. Have you discussed your concerns with your agencys nominated safeguarding children adviser? If not, have you been able to reflect on your concerns with a colleague (in your or another agency) who has appropriate expertise? Have you complied with your agencys child protection procedures? Is there a need to inform the police because a crime has been committed?
Commitment to safeguard To fulfil their commitment to safeguard and promote the welfare of children, all organisations that provide services for, or work with, children and / or adults who have parenting responsibilities must: –Set clear priorities for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children which are explicitly stated in strategic policy documents; –Ensure there is a clear commitment by senior management to the importance of safeguarding and promoting childrens welfare, e.g. in job descriptions and individual performance targets; –Have in place clear lines of accountability within the agency for work on safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children; –Have appropriate whistle blowing procedures and a culture that enables issues about safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children to be addressed; –Maintain accurate records of decision making and actions.
Responsibility to protect All agencies whose staff come into contact with children in their daily activities, and / or who provide services to adults who are parents, must have systems and arrangements in place to ensure that: Staff are recruited safely, (see section 17. Safer recruitment); Staff induction includes advice and instruction on the individual professionals responsibilities in relation to promoting childrens welfare and safeguarding them from harm
Agency training and supervision provision Staff must receive child protection training which is appropriate to their function within the agency, Staff must receive regular supervision, sufficient to support staff to recognise children in need of support and / or safeguarding,
Agency safeguarding policy / procedures Agency must have internal safeguarding children policies and procedures, which comply with the London Child Protection Procedures
Named safeguarding officer Each agency must have a named safeguarding officer who has received appropriate child protection training and knows of the London Procedures and is competent in using them Staff must have easy access during service delivery times to the agencys nominated safeguarding children adviser
Multi agency working Each agency must have arrangements for effective multi-agency working to promote childrens welfare and safeguard them from harm.
Further information Information regarding individual agencies rolls to safeguard children is set out in Chapter 2 of edition 3 of the London Child Protection Procedures 2007.
The London Child Protection Procedures 3 rd Edition, 2007
Section 3 London Child Protection Procedures Information Sharing
Why share? A key factor in many serious case reviews has been a failure to record information, to share it, to understand the significance of the information shared, and to take appropriate action in relation to known or suspected abuse or neglect.
Inter-agency working Information sharing is vital to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and improving information sharing practice is therefore a cornerstone of the Governments Every Child Matters: Change for Children strategy to improve outcomes for children
London Child Protection Procedures The London Child Protection Procedures provide clear guidance and process for professionals in relation to information sharing. Agencies within Havering must comply with these procedures
In deciding whether there is a need to share information, professionals need to consider the legal obligations including : –Whether the information is confidential; –If it is confidential, whether there is a public interest sufficient to justify sharing it
Confidential information is.. sensitive, not already in public domain, shared in confidence Can be shared if authorised by the person who provided it or to whom it relates Can be shared unauthorised if justified in the public interest.. Evidence that the child is suffering or at risk of suffering significant harm Reasonable cause to believe the child may be suffering or at risk of suffering significant harm
Practitioners must weigh up their decision – whether it is to share or not - and record the reasons for it
Practitioners must: Always consider referring to children's social care with concerns about harm Keep the childs interests as the overriding consideration in making any such decisions Seek advice if unsure what to do
Consent is the key to successful information sharing. Even where the Data Protection Act does not demand it, operating with consent is good practice.
Consent: Must be informed Should normally be explicit but can be implied (written is preferable but can be verbal) Must be willing and not inferred from a non response Must be sought again if things change significantly Can be withdrawn In some cases practitioners should not seek consent
What to share and how to share it
In deciding whether or not to share information professionals should use eight key questions: 1. Is there a legitimate purpose to share the information? 2. Does the information enable a person to be identified? 3. Is the information confidential? 4. If the information is confidential, has consent to share been obtained? 5. Is there a statutory duty or court order to share the information? 6. If consent has been refused, or there are good reasons not to seek consent to share confidential information, is there a sufficient public interest to share information? 7. If the decision is to share, is the right information being shared in the right way? 8. Have the decision and the reasons for it, been recorded?
In particular, practitioners should : Share the information which is necessary for the purpose for which it is being shared Share the information with those who need to know Check the information is accurate and up-to-date Share it in a secure way Establish with the recipient whether they intend to pass it on to other people, and ensure they understand the limits of any consent which has been given Inform the person to whom the information relates, and, if different, any other person who provided the information, if you have not already done so and it is safe to do so Record the reasons for deciding to share information.
Legislation containing express powers or which imply powers to share: The Children Act 2004 and 1989 Local Government Act 2000 Education Act 2002 and 1996 Learning and Skills Act 2000 Education (SEN) regulations 2001 Leaving Care Act 2000 Protection of Children Act 1999 Immigration and Asylum Act 1999 Crime and Disorder Act 1998 National health Service Act 1977 The Health and Social care Act 2003
Coffee / Tea Break 10 minutes
The London Child Protection Procedures 3 rd Edition, 2007 The referral process
Responsibility to refer Professionals in all agencies have a responsibility to refer a child to LA childrens social care when it is believed or suspected that the child: Has suffered significant harm (see section 4. Recognition and response and/or section 5. Children in specific circumstances); Is likely to suffer significant harm (see section 4. Recognition and response and/or section 5. Children in specific circumstances) Has developmental and welfare needs which are likely only to be met through provision of family support services (with agreement of the childs parent)
Referrals New referrals and referrals on closed cases should be made to the LA childrens social care duty social worker. Referrals on open cases should be made to the allocated social worker for the case (or in their absence the manager or the duty social worker) All referrals from professionals should be confirmed in writing, by the referrer, within 48 hours. If the referrer has not received an acknowledgement of the referral within three working days, they should contact LA childrens social care again.
Time scales For all referrals to LA childrens social care, the child should be regarded as potentially a child in need, and the referral should be evaluated on the day of receipt (and no later than within one working day), and a decision made regarding the next course of action
Checks and information gathering When taking a referral, LA childrens social care must establish as much of the following information as possible: –Full names (including aliases and spelling variations), date of birth and gender of child/ren; –Family address and (where relevant) school / nursery attended; –Identity of those with parental responsibility; –Names and date of birth of all household members; –Ethnicity, first language and religion of children and parents; –Any special needs of children or parents; –Any significant / important recent or historical events / incidents in child or familys life; –Cause for concern including details of any allegations, their sources, timing and location;
Information gathering Childs current location and emotional and physical condition; Whether the child needs immediate protection; Details of alleged perpetrator, if relevant; Referrers relationship and knowledge of child and parents; Known involvement of other agencies / professionals (e.g. GP); Information regarding parental knowledge of, and agreement to, the referral; The information held on ContactPoint, where available. If there is a flag, establish the reasons for this.
This process should establish: The nature of the concern; How and why it has arisen; What the childs and the familys needs appear to be; Whether the concern involves abuse or neglect; and Whether there is any need for any urgent action to protect the child or any other children in the household or community.
Information sharing A decision to discuss the referral with other agencies without parental knowledge or permission should be authorised by a LA childrens social care manager, and the reasons recorded. LA childrens social care should make it clear to families (where appropriate) and other agencies that the information provided for this assessment may be shared with other agencies, and contribute to the exemplar completed at the end of the assessment.
Information sharing Personal information about non-professional referrers should not be disclosed to third parties (including subject families and other agencies) without consent. The parents permission should be sought before discussing a referral about them with other agencies, unless permission-seeking may itself place a child at risk of significant harm.
Child Protection The LA childrens social care manager should be informed of any potential s47 enquiries and authorise the decision to initiate action. The threshold may be met for a s47 enquiry at the time of referral, following checks and information gathering or at any point of LA childrens social care involvement. The police must be informed at the earliest opportunity if a crime may have been committed.
The immediate response to referrals may be: No further action at this stage; Provision of services; A fuller initial assessment of needs (which may be very brief if the criteria for initiating a s47 enquiry are met); A core assessment if indications exist that the case is particularly complex or several initial assessments have previously been completed; Emergency action to protect a child; A s47 strategy meeting / discussion (where child and/or family are well known or the facts clearly indicate that s47 enquiry is required).
Outcomes A LA childrens social care manager must approve the outcomes of a referral and ensure an ICS chronology has been commenced and/or updated. LA childrens social care must acknowledge all referrals within one working day
No further action Where there is to be no further LA childrens social care action, feedback should be provided to family and referrers about the outcome of this stage of the referral. In the case of referrals from members of the public, feedback must be consistent with the rights to confidentiality of the child and their family.
The London Child Protection Procedures 3 rd Edition, 2007
The London Child Protection Procedures 3 rd Edition, 2007 The Child Protection Conference
Changes to the Child Protection Process From 12 th December 2007 Havering Childrens Social Care (C.S.C.) will cease to hold a Child Protection Register When a Child Protection Conference decides that a child is at risk of harm, the child will be referred to as a Child subject to a Child Protection Plan.
What will change? There will not be a child protection register A list of those children subject to a child protection plan will be held within Children Social Care Professionals with concerns for a child will be able to check whether the child is known to C.S.C. by contacting the Quality Assurance Unit in the day time or the Emergency Duty Team during evenings, weekends and public holidays Professionals requesting information must give the reason for their enquiry to the C.S.C. worker so that appropriate information can be shared and timely action taken.
What stays the same? Changes do not effect threshold for significant harm or the categories of harm but relate specifically to terminology and process once the conference has decided that a child is at risk of harm. Good practice remains - The change will support a clear, focused and structured approach to working with all children subject to a plan
The Outline Plan This will be drawn up at the conference when a decision is made that the child is at risk of harm The aim of the outline plan is to assist the core group to form a more detailed plan and ensure that it is implemented
Monitoring progress Review of progress on achieving the outcomes set out in the child protection plan and consideration as to whether changes need to be made should be an agenda item at each review conference.
Discontinuing the Plan Where appropriate the child protection plan can be discontinued. This will be during a review Child Protection conference and following the chairs decision that the child no longer requires the protection of a child protection plan. In these cases a child plan may be devised.
Core Groups The core group will develop the plan and monitor implementation of the plan. The Core Group will be chaired by the social worker unless the case has been identified to be complex. In those circumstances the Core Group will be chaired by a senior member of staff or IRO
Complex case A case is complex if any of the following are present Frustrated access Superficial engagement Children returning home with a Child Protection Plan. It will be the responsibility of the Conference Chair to identify the level of complexity
Supervision Monitoring will occur within regular supervision and it will be the responsibility of the case worker to bring issues to the attention of the manager.
Responsibility for the Plan All professionals working with the family have a responsibility to bring concerns to the attention of the social worker
Information for Professionals Further information regarding the changes can be found on the information leaflet held within your packs
The London Child Protection Procedures 3 rd Edition, 2007 Children in specific circumstances