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1.1 Foreword and Introduction to the Manual

Contents

  1. Welcome to the Manual
  2. Accessing the Procedures
  3. Context
  4. Safeguarding and Promoting Children's Welfare
  5. Child Protection
  6. Other Terminology in the Manual
  7. Relationship of Policy, Procedures and Guidance
  8. Relevant Staff


1. Welcome to the Manual

Welcome to the electronic Interagency Child Protection and Safeguarding Children Procedures Manual for Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children Board

The responsibility for ensuring that it is kept up to date belongs to the Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children Board's Policy and Procedures Sub Group.

The 'Quick Guide' chapter explains how the Manual has been constructed and the key features which have been included to assist you in navigating the chapters.


2. Accessing the Procedures

The Manual is permanently available via the website for the Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children Board to facilitate ready access and permit regular updating.

Please do not make copies of the Manual or parts thereof as these are likely to become out of date.

If you do come across any errors or omissions when using the Manual, please alert your manager or contact us by using the button on the left hand side of the screen. If you become aware of a necessary addition or revision to the manual, please contact the HSCB Business Manager who will be collating the information for updates.


3. Context

The procedures reflect current legislation, accepted best practice and comply with the government guidance: Working Together to Safeguard Children March 2015.

Further professional guidance is available from "What to do if you're worried that a child is being abused" 2015.

The procedures aim to encourage close working between agencies to facilitate early intervention in a supportive way to meet the needs of children and their families.

The development of the procedures is one of the core functions of the Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children Board (HSCB) in its role to coordinate local work to safeguard and promote the welfare of children.

All organisations that work with children or with adults who have dependent children need to have in place:

  • Clear priorities for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children explicitly stated in strategic policy documents
  • A clear commitment by senior management to the importance of safeguarding and promoting children's welfare
  • A clear line of accountability within the organisation for work on safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children
  • Recruitment and human resources management procedures that take account of the need to protect children and young people including arrangements for appropriate checks on new staff and volunteers
  • Procedures for dealing with allegations of abuse against members of staff and volunteers
  • Arrangements to ensure all staff undertake appropriate training to equip them to carry out their responsibilities effectively, and keep this up to date by refresher training at regular intervals, and that all staff, including temporary staff and volunteers who work with children, are made aware of the establishment's arrangements for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and their responsibilities for that
  • Policies in place for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children including a child protection policy, and procedures that are in accordance with guidance from Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children's Board and locally agreed inter-agency procedures
  • Arrangements to work effectively with other organisations to safeguard and promote the welfare of children, including arrangements for sharing information
  • A culture of listening to and engaging in dialogue with children - seeking their views in ways appropriate to their age and understanding, and taking account of those both in individual decisions and establishment of services and
  • Appropriate whistle blowing procedures and a culture that enables issues about safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children to be addressed

This document offers the instructions and advice required to ensure that the above universal responsibilities are effectively discharged.


4. Safeguarding and Promoting Children's Welfare

Throughout this Manual, safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children is defined as:

  • Protecting children from maltreatment
  • Preventing impairment of children's health or development
  • Ensuring that children are growing up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care

and undertaking that role so as to enable those children to have optimum life chances and to enter adulthood successfully.

Protecting children from maltreatment and preventing impairment of children's health or development are necessary, but not sufficient, to ensure that children are growing up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care. These aspects of Safeguarding and Promoting Welfare are cumulative and all contribute to the five Every Child Matters outcomes that are key to children and young people's wellbeing, namely:

  1. Stay safe.
  2. Be healthy.
  3. Enjoy and achieve.
  4. Make a positive contribution.
  5. Achieve economic wellbeing.


5. Child Protection

Child protection is part of Safeguarding and Promoting Welfare, focusing on the 'Staying Safe' outcome referred to above; it refers to the activity that is undertaken to protect specific children who are suffering or at risk of suffering Significant Harm.


6. Other Terminology in the Manual

So as to ensure consistency in the use of terminology throughout the Manual, a glossary of terms which have a technical significance or for which abbreviations may be used in the text, is provided in the Keywords Appendix which can be accessed by using the button on the left hand side of the screen.


7. Relationship of Policy, Procedures and Guidance

7.1 Policy Framework

The Policy Framework chapters within which all procedures should be read are set out in Part 1 of the Manual. All users should be familiar with these chapters before accessing other Parts of the Manual.

If necessary, agencies may develop supplementary 'internal' policies which represent higher standards or which reflect an agency specific contribution to safeguarding children and child protection. However, if they do so, they must be consistent with those in this Manual.

7.2 Procedures

Procedures indicate what must or may be done in specified circumstances and define the limits of professional discretion.

The procedures have the status of instructions to practitioners in Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children Board member organisations.

Any supplementary internal procedures developed by organisations should also refer to, and comply with these procedures.

7.3 Guidance

Guidance provides contextual information or addresses the question of why specified actions may be required.


8. Relevant Staff

The contents of this Manual are for application by those working, whether paid or unpaid, in Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children Board (HSCB) member agencies and in private or voluntary sector organisations with responsibilities for children living or present in the HSCB area.

End