Presentation on theme: "Metropolitan Police Child Abuse Investigation Command SAFEGUARDING CHILDREN & INNAPPROPRIATE CHASTISEMENT DS Vicky Washington DC Tina Pearce Partnership."— Presentation transcript:
Metropolitan Police Child Abuse Investigation Command SAFEGUARDING CHILDREN & INNAPPROPRIATE CHASTISEMENT DS Vicky Washington DC Tina Pearce Partnership Team /3813
WE AIM TO ANSWER THE FOLLOWING QUESTIONS When is chastisement inappropriate? What is child abuse? What is child protection? How does this affect me as a parent? How does this affect me as a faith leader / teacher?
Parents want the best for their children and to protect them from harm. As children grow and develop, there are times when it is appropriate to discipline them. Consider ; How do I discipline my child(ren)? How do others discipline my child(ren)? How does it make my child feel?
Lawful Chastisement - Section 58 Childrens Act 2004 IT IS ILLEGAL TO HIT A CHILD - a defence of reasonable punishment exists when charged with common assault There is no defence of reasonable punishment for acts of GBH, ABH and CRUELTY
Assault Any intentional or reckless act which causes a person to apprehend immediate unlawful force or personal violence Common Assault Actual Bodily Harm (ABH) Grevious Bodily Harm (GBH) Smacking or otherwise physically chastising a child is an assault
Criminal offences may be committed when there are injuries such as Grazes Scratches Abrasions Minor bruising Swelling / reddening of the skin Superficial cuts The use of implements (belts, slippers, canes, tree branches), strikes to the head / face, multiple strikes are NOT considered reasonable
Child Cruelty I f a person of 16 years who has responsibility for a child or young person under 16 WILFULLY; Assaults, ill-treats, neglects, abandons, exposes him/her, or causes or procures him/her to be assaulted, ill-treated, neglected, abandoned, or exposed In a manner likely to cause him unnecessary suffering or injury to health, that person is guilty of a misdemeanour
What is child abuse and neglect? All ill treatment of children Causing harm Failing to prevent harm Harm = ill treatment or the impairment of health and development Health= physical or mental health Development= physical, intellectual, emotional, social or behavioural development
There are four categories of abuse, which often overlap Emotional Physical Sexual Neglect
Emotional Telling a child they are worthless, unloved, inadequate, undervalued Making them feel excluded, ashamed, humiliated Telling them you expect more of them than they able to do (given their age and ability) Causing a child to feel frightened or in danger (threats of violence towards them, or exposing them to violence between others - e.g. domestic violence) Exploitation / corruption
Sexual Forcing or enticing a child or young person to take part in sexual activities Involving a child in looking at sexual acts (penetrative and non penetrative) Encouraging a child to behave in sexually inappropriate ways
Neglect Persistent failure to meet a childs basic and / or psychological needs, likely to result in the serious impairment of the childs health and development Failure to provide adequate food, shelter or clothing Failure to protect from physical harm or danger Failure to access medical care or treatment Failure to meet childs basic emotional needs
WHAT IS CHILD PROTECTION? Thresholds of Assessment CAF – Common Assessment Framework S17 – Child in Need (CIN) S47 – Local Authority Duty to Investigate (Significant Harm) Children act 1989
S17 Child In Need General duty for Local Authority (LA) to provide services appropriate to those children's needs: The child is unlikely to achieve or maintain, or to have the opportunity of achieving or maintaining a reasonable standard of health or development without the provision of services by a LA The childs health and development is likely to be significantly impaired or further impaired, without provisions of children's social care The child is disabled
S47 Children Act 1989 Is basically where significant harm or likelihood of significant harm is suspected and requires investigation either jointly or by single agency
What is Significant Harm: Severity of ill treatment Duration and frequency of abuse and neglect Presence or degree of threat, coercion, sadism, bizarre or unusual elements. Sometimes a single traumatic event may constitute significant harm Compilation of events, both acute and long standing, significantly impacting on their physical and psychological development.
Children have a right to be protected from harm Parents have a right to expect that organisations to which they entrust their children are diligent Awareness of health and safety issues Some professionals might lack knowledge training and experience Statutory authorities should engage community and faith organisations to ensure that all children are protected from harm
What to do if you suspect your child is being mistreated outside of the home REPORT CONCERNS TO POLICE OR SOCIAL SERVICES
Faith communities should ensure that all staff and volunteers who have regular contact with children:- Have been checked for suitability in working with children and understand the extent and limits of the volunteer role; Should have a named safeguarding officer who will have the knowledge and skills to support other staff and work closely with statutory agencies.
Para Have access to training opportunities to promote their knowledge; Know how to report any concerns about possible abuse or neglect; procedures in place. Are aware of the possibility of child abuse and neglect; Are vigilant about their own actions so they cannot be misinterpreted.
Organisational Responsibility The London Safeguarding Children Board has produced a document entitled "Competence Still Matters: Safeguarding training for all employees and volunteers" This is a guide to the responsibilities of all organisations and identifies the training requirements for each group; subgroup
Access Training in Tower Hamlets For free advice and training for voluntary and community organisation in Tower Hamlets contact; Cobita Telephone
What to do if you suspect that a child is at risk Clarify what exactly the child is saying Do not give undertakings of confidentiality Be aware that recordings of incident might be used in court proceedings You must contact children's social care or the police directly if you think the child is at risk of immediate harm
Para Faith organisations can seek advice on child protection issues from the Churches Child Protection Advisory Service (CCPAS).