Child protection and safeguarding - resources for parents

Our responsibility in safeguarding children

The Children Acts of 1989 and 2004 place a duty on us to safeguard and promote the welfare of children and protect them from significant harm.

Why do we need to safeguard children?

  • Professionals across Wessex are committed to providing a high standard of service for the health and wellbeing of every child and young person.
  • We believe that all children have the right to grow up in a safe environment.
  • If we have a concern about the safety of your child, we will follow national child protection policies and procedures. We are required to follow specific procedures if we have any questions about the safety of any child referred to us.

Working in partnership to safeguard your child

We always try to work in partnership with parents and to offer help and support at this very worrying and stressful time. It is advisable to cooperate with agencies involved in the best interests of your child.

What will happen?

The medical and nursing staff will discuss their concerns with you, unless they believe this would further endanger the safety of your child. The medical staff will discuss any medical investigations needed and ask for your consent, or your child’s if they are old enough. This may involve any one or all of the following:

• Full examination and history of any medical conditions or mechanisms of injury

• Blood samples to exclude any underlying medical problems

• X-ray of one or more of your child’s bones

• Special scanning of the head and brain

• Examination of the eyes

The decision to carry out these procedures is given very careful consideration and only performed in your child’s best interests.

• In line with the child protection policies and procedures, a referral will be made to the appropriate social work department who have a legal duty to investigate child protection concerns. We have a duty to share information about your child with all agencies involved in any investigation, including the police.

• The social worker involved will tell you about the child protection process and any decisions made about your child’s safety.

Your child's rights

Your child’s rights are:

• To be heard

• To have their views and feelings considered

• To have appropriate confidentiality

• To be protected and supported

• To be kept involved and informed, according to their age and understanding

• To ask for explanations and to complain

• To consent or refuse to consent for medical examination if they fully understand what is involved

Your rights as a parent

Your rights as a parent are:

• To be heard

• To be informed and involved

• To be supported

• To ask for explanations

• To have appropriate confidentiality

• To seek legal advice and to complain

• To have an interpreter if needed

Informations leaflets for parents - what will happen next

Useful numbers

A MASH (Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub) bringing together services from social care, police and health:

MASH for children living in Hampshire : 0300 555 1384, out of hours: 0300 555 1373
MASH for children living in Isle of Wight: 0300 300 0117, out of hours: 0300 555 1373
MASH for children living in Portsmouth City 0845 671 0271, out of hours: 0300 555 1373
MASH for children living in Southampton City: 02380 833336, out of hours: 02380 23344
ChAD (Children’s Advice and Duty Service) for children living in Dorset: Professionals number 01305 228558 (including out of hours), Families and members of the public number 01305 228866
BCP First Response Hub for children living in Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole: 01202 123334, out of hours: 01202 738256
Childline: 0800 1111
NSPCC: 0808 800 5000

If you want to make a complaint, please ask any member of staff for a ‘PALS’ leaflet

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