Safeguarding | LocalGov

Council warns of dangerous autism ‘cure’ fraud


Greenwich council has warned schools and nurseries to be on guard after learning of an individual offering ‘experimental procedures’ for autistic children.

Struggles continue for scandal-hit council contractor


A council contractor previously at the centre of a residential care abuse scandal has continued to struggle since it closed the sites.

Toolkit to support gender-questioning children 'unlawful'


A ‘toolkit’ used by many schools to support gender-questioning children is unlawful, according to a leading equality and human rights barrister.

Finley Boden: Council apologises for ‘missed opportunities’


Derbyshire CC has apologised for the ‘missed opportunities’ to do more to safeguard 10-month-old Finley Boden who was murdered on Christmas Day in 2020.

Campaign to raise data and safeguarding awareness launched


Local authorities and social service providers have been urged to do more to raise awareness about responsible data sharing to protect children from harm.

Worcestershire council contacted 36 times before child’s death


Worcestershire County Council was contacted multiple times about the welfare of nine-year-old Alfie Steele, who was killed by his mother and her partner.

More than 1,000 child refugees placed in adult accommodation


Child refugees arriving in the UK alone are exposed to harm and abuse in adult accommodation because of the Home Office’s flawed age assessment system, according to a new report.

Bronson Battersby: Review launched after toddler’s death


Lincolnshire County Council has launched a review after the tragic death of two-year-old Bronson Battersby.

Online Safety – Time to Act


Schools still have work to do despite onus being put on online platforms to conform to new safeguarding legislation, says safeguarding expert Mark Bentley.

Damning reality of asylum


A shocking public health report by Hounslow LBC exposes bleak conditions as councils urge Home Office and contractors to improve.

DLUHC defends homelessness monitoring


Mandarins have denied they do not have a clear picture of homelessness levels among Ukrainian refugees.

Safeguarding review after 10-year-old's death


An independent safeguarding review is to begin following the death of 10-year-old Sara Sharif.

Concern over Bristol schools’ app use to monitor children


Campaign groups have accused Bristol schools who use an app to monitor pupils and their families of ‘intrusive monitoring’.

Council confirms murdered Sara Sharif was known to authorities


A 10-year-old girl who was found dead in Surrey nearly two weeks ago was known to the county council.

Scandal-hit firm reports losses


A firm at the centre of a residential care abuse scandal has reported operating losses of £5.8m for the year to June 2022.

Shedding light on modern slavery statements


Gabriella Jimenez, communications manager, Shiva Foundation discusses the importance of modern slavery statements and how councils can effectively write one.

20,000 vulnerable children taught in unregistered settings


Tens of thousands of children are being taught in unregistered settings, some of which do not meet safeguarding standards and one which had a firearm on site.

Case review requirement ignored


Safeguarding partners in Walsall have admitted failing to send a serious case review to the education secretary as required.

London boroughs call for more powers to oversee in-year school admissions


Pupils who change schools during term-time run the risk of missing out on education because of a complex in-year admissions system, London boroughs warn.

Third of parents say school travel affected by cuts


Almost a third of parents say that their child’s school travel has been affected by funding cuts, new research has revealed.

'Family group conferencing' helps keep at-risk children out of care


At-risk children who take part in 'family group conferencing' meetings are much less likely to go into care, a new study has found.

Council not informed when homeless families relocated


A council in the North West was not told when several London councils sent vulnerable homeless families to live in temporary accommodation in its area.

Review identifies ‘missed opportunities’ in Baby Acer’s death


The death of a five-month-old boy in his bouncer was part of a systemic failure of social services at Surrey County Council, review concludes.

Abuse victims ‘exposed to risk’ due to funding issues


Funding to tackle violence against women and girls in London is fragmented, complex and difficult to understand, according to a new report.

Court clarifies council obligations under Human Rights Act


There is no requirement for children to be in the care of a local authority for the obligations under the Human Rights Act to arise, Court of Appeal rules.

MP calls for home schooled children to be registered


Parliament is facing a call for a new law saying councils must log information on home-schooled children in their areas.

Opportunities missed to help man who died of starvation


A man with severe mental health problems died alone weighing four and a half stone after opportunities to help him were missed, a review of the case found.

Councils failing to support abused children, charity warns


Children and young people who have suffered sexual or domestic abuse risk missing out on the help they need due to lack of support from councils, NSPCC warns.

Parents reluctant to report missing children, report finds


Low trust and confidence in the Metropolitan police is making some parents and carers reluctant to report children missing, according to the London Assembly.

Safeguarding overhaul called for after ‘horrific’ child abuse case


Council leaders have called for more powers to hold partners to account after a review into the abuse of children with disabilities at Hesley Group of homes.

New safeguarding software to transform collaboration between councils and schools


Software company CPOMS has developed a first-of-its-kind solution to transform the way councils work with schools to log and manage safeguarding concerns.

Independent review into baby murder case


The case of a 10-month-old baby murdered by his parents just 39 days after being placed back into their care is to be independently reviewed.

Schools report 60% increase in safeguarding referrals


Schools in England saw a 59% increase in safeguarding referrals and re-referrals made to children's services between 2020-21 and 2021-22, according to survey.

Lambeth council fined £20k after child misses operation


A young person spent three years in unnecessary pain because delays by Lambeth council meant they could not have a crucial operation, the ombudsman has ruled.

Safeguarding review of child sex abuse case withheld


Walsall Safeguarding Partnership (WSP) will not be publishing its review into the largest child sex abuse case investigated by West Midlands Police.

Abuse survivors take legal action against council


Former pupils who were sexually and physically abused at a school in Liverpool have begun legal action against the city council that ran it.

Children in youth custody face ‘tension and paranoia’


Children as young as 10 in youth custody are facing ‘palpable tension and paranoia’, according to an official report.

Effective monitoring of safeguarding


John Wild, managing director at CPOMS, explores the role and importance of safeguarding software in aiding multi-agency collaboration.

Council welcomes £3.5m Morrisons fine after employee death


Morrisons has been fined £3.5m following successful prosecution by Tewkesbury BC after the death of an epileptic employee in one of the supermarket’s stores.

Council calls for review into missing children


Brighton & Hove City Council has called for a safeguarding review after dozens of unaccompanied asylum-seeking children went missing from a hotel in the city.

Schools should be better utilised for local safeguarding, report says


Schools and primary care networks should be better utilised in supporting Local Safeguarding Partnerships, a new report into foster care has concluded.

Council chiefs call for powers to close illegal schools


Council leaders called for tougher powers to regulate out-of-school settings after a Government-commissioned report uncovered major safeguarding concerns.

Watchdog raises safeguarding concerns at Powys


A watchdog has taken Powys CC to task over the lack of ‘control’ of its safeguarding arrangements.

Council accused of undermining safety of sex workers


Newham Council has been accused of undermining the safety of sex workers after the local authority set out proposals for a clampdown on ‘kerb crawlers’.

Councils told to review children’s homes after ‘culture of abuse’ revealed


Councils have been urged to ensure children with disabilities living in children’s homes are safe after a new report finds a ‘culture of abuse’ in three homes.

Ofsted blasts Cheshire East’s safeguarding services


Child safeguarding services in Cheshire East have ‘serious and fundamental weaknesses’ which leave children at risk of exploitation, according to Ofsted.

Shropshire Council facing £18.8m overspend


Shropshire Council has warned that it is facing a predicted overspend of up to £18.8m due to inflation, rising energy costs, and the demand for services.

Review calls for creation of local child protection units


A review into the deaths of Star Hobson and Arthur Labinjo-Hughes has recommended that specialist units with a child protection focus should be established.

Councils need support to protect refugees from exploitation, experts say


The Government has been urged to take ‘urgent measures’ to support councils in their response to the Ukrainian refugee crisis in order to tackle exploitation.

Report warns of stark variation in the identification of child sexual abuse


Some local areas are failing to identify and respond to child sexual abuse, a new report has warned today.

Third of trafficked children go missing from council care


One in three trafficked children go missing from council care, say children’s charities who warn Nationality and Borders Bill will make the problem worse.

Government intervenes over council's 'inadequate' children's services


The Government has issued a statutory direction to Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Council forcing it to improve its children’s social care services.

Child Sexual Exploitation: Why awareness days matter


Georgina Middleton discusses the importance of awareness days and how they can be a key stepping stone towards real and lasting change.

'Alarmingly high' numbers of exploited looked-after-children going missing from care


Nearly half of looked-after-children that have experienced criminal or sexual exploitation went missing from care in 2020, charities have warned.

Government launches Liberty Protection Safeguards consultation


Government has launched a consultation on Liberty Protection Safeguards to ensure the freedom of people who may need decision-making assistance is protected.

Charity calls for ‘safeguarding measures’ to protect Ukrainian refugees


Human trafficking experts have urged the Government to ensure that the Homes for Ukraine scheme includes ‘rigorous safeguarding measures’ to protect refugees.

Children still not safe from sexual abuse in schools, inquiry finds


Children are not as safe as they should be from sexual abuse in residential schools, a damning new report has warned today.

Solihull ordered to improve children's services


The Government has ordered Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council to make urgent improvements to its children’s social care services following ‘serious’ concerns over how it protects vulnerable children.

Abused school pupils threaten council with legal action


Former pupils of a council-run school are considering legal action against Lincolnshire County Council after two former staff members were convicted of abuse.

Shortcomings revealed in second child murder case


A second court case in a month has revealed serious shortcomings in how local agencies responded to allegations of abuse shortly before a child’s murder.

National review launched in wake of Arthur Labinjo-Hughes murder


A national review and local inspection will take place following the murder of Arthur Labinjo-Hughes has been announced by the Government.

Keeping the safety net


Local authority leadership is invaluable to Transitional Safeguarding and councils are ideally placed to enable complexity-attuned commissioning, says Dez Holmes.

Children abused for decades under care of Lambeth Council, inquiry finds


Hundreds of children were subjected to decades of cruelty and sexual abuse while in the care of Lambeth Council, a damning inquiry has found.

Sexual harassment ‘normalised’ for children, Ofsted warns


Sexual harassment, including online sexual abuse, has become ‘normalised’ for children and young people, Ofsted has found.

Newborn baby care orders on the rise, research finds


The majority of mothers facing urgent care proceedings are given less than a week’s formal notice that their newborn baby might be removed, new research has warned today.

Crack down on abuse of modern slavery safeguards


Local authorities will receive training to help frontline staff identify genuine victims of modern slavery.

Councils warn of 'harrowing' rise in serious child harm cases during pandemic


The number of serious child-related incidents reported by councils has risen by more than a quarter during the pandemic, new figures show.

New strategy 'a golden opportunity' to tackle child sexual abuse


A new strategy to protect children from all forms of child sexual abuse has been published by the Government today.

Council pays mother £8,000 after failing to protect her from violent son


Three young children were left without any protection from their violent older brother after Somerset County Council failed to help their family, Ombudsman finds.

'Data desert' on vulnerable children and county lines, report warns


Local authorities and police forces are failing to identify the number of vulnerable children being exploited by criminal gangs, a new report has warned.

Pandemic made vulnerable children 'invisible' report warns


Vulnerable children became 'invisible' during the pandemic, Ofsted's chief inspector warned today.

Council apologises over failings at Morleigh Group care homes


Cornwall Council has apologised after a report highlighted failures at the former Morleigh Group care home provider.

Half of professionals feel childhood obesity is a child protection issue


Nearly half of health and social workers believe child obesity should be considered a child protection issue, according to a new study.

Framework for referring child victims of trafficking 'not working' warns commissioner


The National Referral Mechanism (NRM) for identifying child victims of trafficking is 'not working', the anti-slavery commissioner has warned.

Shared Lives in health


Personalised care must be high on the agenda as we look to create a stronger, kinder and more connected society, writes Alex Fox OBE.

Coronavirus is jeopardising child welfare


Chris Lloyd-Smith examines how the coronavirus is endangering child welfare, posing a challenge to local authority childcare and protection services.

Paediatricians urge PM to make school reopenings ‘a priority’


Over 1,500 paediatricians have signed an open letter to the Prime Minister urging him to make the reopening of schools a priority.

Social workers to be placed in schools to spot children at risk


The Government has committed £6.5m to place social workers in schools to help spot the signs of child abuse and neglect.

Ensuring continuity of care in a time of crisis


Julie Tyas discusses how tech is becoming the eyes and ears of social workers during the pandemic.

Survey highlights child abuse could go unreported during lockdown


Child abuse could go unreported during lockdown as a quarter of adults do not know where to go for help, a survey has found.

Charities call for 'vital' early intervention funding to safeguard children


Funding cuts to children's services have left councils unable to cope with the current crisis, charities have warned today.

Warnings that vulnerable children 'hidden from sight' during lockdown


New local area profiles will help councils identify how many vulnerable children are in their area.

Extra funding to protect vulnerable children during Covid-19


Projects that protect vulnerable children will share more than £12m to help keep them safe during the coronavirus outbreak.

NHS Digital extends sharing of child protection information


Health visitors and school nurses will have access to data about vulnerable children three years ahead of schedule in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

‘We’re not in it for the money’


Emma Lewis, a member of the Victims and Survivors Panel at the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse, explores what redress really means for survivors.

Report highlights complex nature of safeguarding in residential schools


New research has revealed the unique challenges staff in residential schools face to protect children from sexual abuse.

CQC issues COVID-19 guidance on DBS checks


The Care Quality Commission(CQC)  has issued interim guidance on the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) and other recruitment checks in response to coronavirus.

Domestic abuse puts children at more risk of exploitation, review warns


There is an overlap between children’s experience of domestic abuse and their offending behaviour, a review has concluded today.

Calls to mobilise an 'army of volunteers' to protect children during lockdown


The Children’s Commissioner for England has warned an ‘army’ of volunteers are needed to protect vulnerable children while schools are closed.

Court finds woman has capacity to decide about contact with husband


The High Court today ruled that a woman with a relatively rare form of dementia has the capacity to make decisions for herself when it comes to her husband.

Social workers ‘urgently’ need hand sanitizer, survey reveals


Social workers have called on the Government to provide them with safety equipment in order to minimize the risk of contracting and spreading the coronavirus.

New programme launched to support fight against ‘witchcraft allegations’


The centre dedicated to fighting female genital mutilation (FGM) has launched a first-of-its-kind e-learning programme to address the startling rise of witchcraft allegations against children.

Council chiefs welcome appointment of Ofcom as ‘online harms regulator’


Local authority leaders have welcomed the announcement that the telecoms and broadcasting regulator will be responsible for regulating online platforms.

Norfolk conducts major review to improve safeguarding practices


A new task force will be set up in Norfolk to improve safeguarding across the county.

Family hardship drives 53% increase in children referred for ‘urgent support’


A rise in family ‘conflict and hardship’ against a background of cuts to council budgets is behind the heightened pressure on child protection services, local authority leaders have revealed.

Social alarms: time’s running out for local authorities to go digital


Wendy Darling warns around 900,000 telecare users in the UK could be affected as telephone providers will stop installing landlines after 2020.

Council makes improvements following death of rough sleeper


Worcester City Council has implemented all ten recommendations made in an independent review into the death of a rough sleeper in the city.

Brexit threatens fight against modern slavery


The commissioner appointed to tackle modern slavery has called for a stronger focus on prevention and warned that Brexit could undermine efforts to stop slavery.

Council adopts fingerprint-based drug testing


Peterborough City Council has brought in fingerprint-based drug testing as part of its family safeguarding social care initiative.

Safeguarding shake-up


With local safeguarding children boards being abolished, Neil Merrick finds out what new arrangements councils are setting up in their local areas.

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