Sefton Local Safeguarding Children Board

Professionals

Child Protection Conference Report

trainingSefton LSCB identified that some agencies were experiencing difficulty in structuring and providing a written report to Child Protection Case Conferences. The template below, with guidance notes, is designed to assist agencies in providing key relevant information for conference 

 

Sefton LSCB Agency Report to Child Protection Conference Template

Also see Sefton LSCB 7 Minute Briefing on Agency Report to CP Conference

Child Protection Standards (2018)

Sefton LSCChild ProtectionB has developed Child Protection (CP) Standards which are about the roles and responsibilities of practitioners who are involved in the Child Protection process.

Organisations committed to child protection must aim to achieve the highest level of protection for children with whom they come into contact and to work towards achieving the standards.

The CP Standards have been developed by Sefton LSCB Policy and Procedures Sub-Group and the Sefton Safeguarding Children Review & Quality Assurance Unit.

We recognise that all organisations coming into contact with children have a fundamental duty of care towards them, and we acknowledge our responsibilities to keep children safe.

Click to view the Child Protection Standards

 

Materials for Child Protection

Materials for Child Protection (Developed by Sefton Young Advisors)

Child Protection

Sefton Young Advisors have developed materials and resources to use with Children, Young People and Families who may become involved in the child protection system.  These materials are to support practitioners who work with children and families.

Child Protection Conference

For Parents & Carers - A guide to Child Protection Conferences - Information Pack

For Children & Young People - A guide to helping you understand your plan

For Children & Young People - Child/Young Persons report for the Child Protection Conference (Your chance to share your views)

A guide to 'Who's Who' - (template to record who everyone is at meetings)

Expectations of agencies contributing to child protection conferences - Poster

For use by Practitioners

My Report (for looked after children & young people to use within LAC Reviews)

Letter to Young Person (for use by Independent Reviewing Officer)

Neglect Strategy

Sefton has a strong commitment to partnership working with children and young people and their families. We have a clear strategy led by the local authority and supported by partners regarding Early Help and Intervention. Neglect is an issue that requires a detailed strategic approach to assist partners to be clear on what neglect is.

The impact of neglect on children and young people is enormous. Neglect causes great distress to children, potential injury, developmental delay, increased risk of teenage pregnancy and increased risk of sexual, domestic or physical abuse, leading to poor health, educational and social outcomes and is potentially fatal. Lives are affected and their ability to attend and attain at school is reduced. Their emotional health and wellbeing is often compromised and this impacts on their success in adulthood and their ability to parent in the future. Neglect is unacceptable because of the lasting damage it can have and also because it is avoidable harm which is within our power to address.

View Sefton LSCB Neglect Strategy

View Neglect Screening Tool

 

Child Neglect - Be Professionally Curious (Investigators/Practitioners Guidance Note)

Early Help Strategy

Image result for children with painted hands

Early Help in Sefton is extremely important and we wish to work with organisations and communities in ensuring that children and young people receive appropriate and early support so that they can continue to aspire, achieve and become happy, healthy and resilient adults.

Sefton has a good offer of Early Help which means that families get help when they first need it. The Early Help services are well coordinated and meet a range of needs and are closely aligned to Children’s Social Care. This is reinforced by a large and vibrant voluntary, community and faith sector which supports local and creative solutions for the communities they support.

Most children are supported by our universal services such as GPs, schools and social/leisure organisations however a minority need short term support. Our Early Help Teams provide short term support for children with additional needs and this in most cases avoids the need for long term involvement from our statutory agencies eg Children’s Social Care or Youth Offending Team.

Sefton MBC has so far led our Early Help Strategy which has been supported well by its partners. This Integrated Early Help Strategy takes this work to another level by embedding Early Help approaches throughout its front line practice including and strong resilient communities.

 View Sefton LSCB's Early Help Strategy

Prevent Duty Guidance

Prevent Duty Guidance for Schools

The Prevent Duty Guidance (under the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015 ) was released by the Government in March 2015 which places a duty on schools, and other agencies, to “have due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism”.  The duty placed on schools covers 4 areas:

  • Risk Assessment
  • Working in Partnership
  • Staff Training
  • IT Policies

The Prevent Duty Guidance can be accessed here: Prevent Duty Guidance and a letter to the Director of Children’s Services can be found here: Safeguarding pupils from extremism and radicalisation.

The DfE, Prevent Duty departmental advice and DfE, Social Media guidance has been issued to help schools keep children safe from the risk of radicalisation and extremism.  This departmental advice complements the statutory guidance and intends to help schools and childcare providers by:

  • clarifying what the prevent duty means for schools and childcare providers
  • outlining what they can do to help protect children from the risk of radicalisation
  • making clear what schools and childcare providers should do to demonstrate compliance with the duty
  • informing them about other sources of information, advice and support

In addition to this, you can also access the free NCALT Channel/Prevent General Awareness E-Learning Module by clicking on the link below:

This online piece of training includes information on how Channel links to the government’s counter-terrorism strategy (CONTEST) through the Prevent strategy.  It also provides guidance on how to identify people who may be vulnerable to radicalisation and how to refer them into the Channel programme.  It does not replace the WRAP training that schools will be required to ensure staff have received, but it is a good starting point in the interim period for key staff.  There is an expectation from the Board that all key school Safeguarding staff will have completed this online training.

The Department for Education has published a new policy paper outlining how it is tackling extremism through the education and children’s services sectors. Examples of the work covered includes the Prevent duty, guidance for schools and childcare providers and inspections.  You can find the link here:

Within this paper, there is also a link to some additional resources that the DfE has produced that are available to schools via the TES website. 

Domestic Abuse

domestic abuse bearDomestic Abuse can be physical, sexual, emotional or financial and committed by an intimate partner or family member

If you are forced to alter your behaviour because you are frightened of your partner or family member’s reaction, you are being abused.

The Home Office (March 2013) defines domestic abuse as:

“Any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive or threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between those aged 16 or are or who have been intimate partners or family members regardless of gender or sexuality.

This can encompass, but is not limited to, the following types of abuse:

  • Psychological
  • Physical
  • Sexual
  • Financial
  • Emotional

Controlling behaviour is: a range of acts designed to make a person subordinate and/or dependent by isolating them from sources of support, exploiting their resources and capacities for personal gain, depriving them of the means needed for independence, resistance and escape and regulating their everyday behaviour.

Coercive behaviour is: an act or a pattern of acts of assault, threats, humiliation and intimidation or other abuse that is used to harm, punish, or frighten their victim"

This definition includes so called 'honour' based violence, female genital mutilation (FGM) and forced marriage, and is clear that victims are not confined to one gender or ethnic group.

Please see Sefton Council's website for more information about domestic abuse

What Support is Available?

Sefton Independent Domestic Violence Advisors (IDVA) Team can:

  • offer free crisis intervention support to high risk victims of domestic abuse.
  • provide practical help including safety planning for the whole family, support through the Criminal Justice System, and home security checks.
  • work with male and female victims aged 16+
  • work with victims even if they chose to remain in their relationship.
  • The team are available:
    Monday to Friday 9.00am – 5.00pm

Phone: 0151 934 5142

Email: IDVA.Team@sefton.gov.uk - please note this is not a secure email address

"Ask me" is a quote from the Roddy Doyle novel "The woman who walked into doors" about a victim of domestic abuse.  Sefton LSCB hopes this quote promotes professional curiosity when working with potential victims of abuse.

Managing Allegations (Local Authority's Designated Officer)

Role of the Local Authority's Designated Officer

The role of the Designated Officer for the Local Authority (DO) is set out in Government guidance Working Together to Safeguard Children (DfE).

Local Authorities should have a Designated Officer for the Local Authority (DO) to be involved in the management and oversight of individual cases. The Designated Officer for the Local Authority (DO) should provide advice and guidance to employers and voluntary organisations, liaising with the police and other agencies and monitoring the progress of cases to ensure that they are dealt with as quickly as possible, consistent with a thorough and fair process;

  • any allegation should be reported immediately to a senior manager within the organisation. The Designated Officer for the Local Authority (DO) should also be informed within one working day of all allegations that come to an employer’s attention or that are made directly to the police; and
  • if an organisation removes an individual (paid worker or unpaid volunteer) from work such as looking after children (or would have, had the person not left first) because the person poses a risk of harm to children, the organisation must make a referral to the Disclosure and Barring Service. It is an offence to fail to make a referral without good reason.


The Designated Officer for the Local Authority (DO) role applies to paid, unpaid, volunteer, casual, agency and self-employed workers. The Designated Officer for the Local Authority (DO) is involved from the initial phase of the allegation through to the conclusion of the case.

Their role is to give advice and guidance to employers and voluntary organisations; liaise with the Police, when necessary and other agencies, and monitor the progress of cases to ensure that they are dealt with in a timely manner and consistent with a thorough and fair process.


The Designated Officer for the Local Authority (DO) helps co-ordinate information-sharing with the right people and will also monitor and track any investigation, with the aim to resolve it as quickly as possible.

The Designated Officer for the Local Authority (DO) should be alerted to all cases in which it is alleged that a person who works with children has:

  • behaved in a way that has harmed, or may have harmed, a child
  • possibly committed a criminal offence against children, or related to a child
  • poses a risk of harm to children

What does the Designated Officer for the Local Authority (DO) do?

Provides an ‘Initial Discussion’ which allows for the giving of advice and guidance relating to the most appropriate way of managing the allegation or concern, and most importantly will help establish what the ‘next steps’ should be in terms of investigating the matter further. See flowchart regarding managing allegations process.

To contact Sefton's Designated Officer for the Local Authority (DO) tel: 0151 934 3783.

Sefton's Designated Officer for the Local Authority Referral Form

On conclusion of an internal investigations, a senior manager from within the employing agency of the adult concerned, should complete and submit a feedback form to the Designated Officer for the Local Authority (DO).

Managing Allegations Information Leaflets:

Leaflet for Employers

Leaflet for Employees

Leaflet for Parents/Carers

 

To view the Managing Allegations Procedures, see Section 15 of Sefton LSCB Multi-Agency Safeguarding Procedures.

Making Safeguarding Referrals to the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS)

If you dismiss or remove a person from regulated activity (or may have done so had they not left)’ because they have harmed or posed a risk of harm to a child or vulnerable adult, then you have a LEGAL duty to refer the person to the DBS.

The DBS’ role is to make barring decisions about people who are referred to it (usually following an employer’s disciplinary process), with the possible consequence of the person being barred from working or volunteering with children and/or vulnerable adults. The DBS uses a fair, thorough and consistent process that ensures that the decision it reaches is both proportionate and appropriate to the risk the person poses to children or vulnerable adults.

On 1 December 2012 the Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA) and the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) merged to form a new organisation, the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS). The legal duty to make referrals remains, however referrals should now be addressed to the DBS.

The DBS’ website is www.homeoffice.gov.uk/DBS and provides a range of materials to help you to consider or make a referral. This includes a Referral Form, Referral Guidance, FAQs and a series of Fact Sheets.

You may also contact the DBS Helpline on 01325 953795 for information or advice about making a referral.

i-HOP

i-HOP- Supporting all professionals to work with the children and families of offenders. The i-HOP service, provides a free to access one stop website with all the information necessary for working with these potentially vulnerable families. Find local and national targeted services, training and events, case studies, quality assessed research and policy as well as practice models and case studies to inspire you. i-HOP is run by Barnardo’s and funded by the Department for Education.

I-HOP offer a useful resource (see below) that has been devised for multi agency professionals to develop their work with this group. 

i-HOP Quality Statements and Toolkit. This free practical resource is structured around 8 central aspects of work with offenders’ children and families. It includes check lists for you to self assess your service’s work with this group and a template to enable you to develop a realistic work plan. 

Licensing

Sefton Safeguarding Children Unit is responsibile for matters relating to the protection of children from harm under the Licensing Act 2003, it must be notified of all license variations and new applications for the sale and supply of alcohol and public entertainment.

Safeguarding children – from birth to their 18th birthday – is a national licensing objective. This is not only about selling alcohol to children, but concerns wider safeguarding concerns such as:

  • Sexual exploitation
  • Substance Misuse
  • Witnessing or being victims of crime
  • Anti-social Behaviour

Licensed premises are those that have been have been licensed under The Licensing Act 2003, and include:

  • Cinemas
  • Clubs
  • Department stores
  • Festivals
  • Hot Food Takeaways
  • Off Licenses
  • Pubs
  • Restaurants
  • Shops
  • Sports venues

To view Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council Licensing Policy Statement

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