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Issue - meetings

Safeguarding Children Board - Annual Report

Meeting: 12/11/2012 - Children & Young People Committee (Item 31)

31 Safeguarding Children Board - Annual Report pdf icon PDF 70 KB

Report of Chair, Local Safeguarding Children Board (to follow)

Additional documents:


RESOLVED – (1) That the Committee receive the report and recommends that it also goes forward to the Health and Wellbeing Board.;


                           (2) The Committee also sought to identify any issues arising from the report for further clarification or action.



31.1    The Committee considered the Annual Report of the Local Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB) for 2011/12. The report had been prepared by the LSCB Independent Chair, Alan Bedford, who was a Non Voting Member of the Committee.


31.2         It was explained that the Children Act 2004 required each local authority to establish an LSCB and that it should publish an annual report concerning safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children in its local area to the local Children’s Trust Board. Under the Council’s changed governance arrangements the report would be submitted both to the Children and Young People’s Committee, the Shadow Health and Wellbeing Board and all member agencies.


31.3    Mr Bedford presented the report with input from the LSCB Business Manager summarising the Board’s key achievements, how the Board had made a difference and its onward priorities over the coming year and into the future. Mr Bedford stressed that the two key issues for the Board over the coming year were to handle the transition period for the new regulations and to work with partner organisations to reduce the number of lower risk referrals to social work when more could be done by those organisations at an early stage. This would free up Council staff to focus more on cases that needed professional social work intervention. The Chair confirmed that she was aware of this on-going work.


31.4    Councillor Brown stated that she was pleased to note the Board’s role in monitoring sexual exploitation. Whilst noting the decrease in the number of child protection cases she was concerned to note that there had been an increase in the number of referrals made. The Legal Adviser to the Committee explained that this issue was complex. One element was to seek to prevent the number of cases going up by putting multi-agency early intervention measures into place. Effective information sharing was key. Another key element was to ensure that once in the system proactive measures were in place to ensure that children were not signed off from it too soon. Measures were being put into place thereto address this, with improved quality assurance checks to ensure that processes were followed through as part of a staged approach.


31.5    The Legal Adviser to the Committee further explained that a series of recent meetings had taken place via the Early Care Planning Forum to discuss measures to avoid these problems. The Family Justice System was in the process of review and reform, in particular the role of the Claremont Specialist Assessment Unit in picking up cases from January 2013 prior to care proceedings being issued. The Board was also keen to encourage greater use of common assessment processes.


31.6    Councillor Pissaridou enquired regarding the level of involvement by other agencies e.g., nurseries. It was explained that referrals came from a number of sources and that the Council was encouraging early intervention/prevention The Lead Commissioner, Schools, Skills and Learning stated that work had been undertaken to support schools in engaging in this process more fully and to improve the CAF system in this respect. The Chair referred to the fact that this had been drawn out in the report on this subject considered by the Committee at its previous meeting.


31.7    Councillor Powell welcomed the report and stated that she was aware of the CAF process by virtue of her work in the third sector across the city.


31.8    Mr Jeffery, Parent Forum referred to the direction of travel set out in the key points  summarised  in the report, stressing that it was very important to encourage members of the public to voice their concerns.


31.9    The Chair, Councillor Shanks thanked Mr Bedford for the Board’s report which was detailed and informative. In answer to Mr Bedford’s query regarding whether there were any other Council Committees to which the report should be forwarded in addition to the Health and Well Being Board, the response was given that this would be the most appropriate body (besides this one) to which this document should be sent.


31.10  RESOLVED –That the Committee receives the report, notes its contents and recommends that it also goes forward to the Health and Wellbeing Board.;


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