Blackburn with Darwen Local Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB) Annual Report ( ) Business Plan ( )

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1 Blackburn with Darwen Local Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB) Annual Report ( ) Business Plan ( )

2 Contents 1. Introduction by the Independent Chair 2. Governance and Accountability Relationship of LSCB with other partnership boards Budget & Resources Attendance at LSCB Meetings 3. Blackburn with Darwen: the Place, the People and their Needs 4. Monitoring Activity of the LSCB Case File and Practice Audits Serious Case Reviews (SCRs) Multi-Agency Concise Reviews (MACRs) Performance Monitoring & Quality Assurance 5. Participation Multi-professional Discussion Forums (MPDFs) Child and Parent/Carer Consultations 6. Training Provision 7. Child Death Overview Panel 8. Examples of Multi-Agency Work and Outcomes 9. Business Plan Priorities, Progress 10. Priority Areas, Business Plan, page 1 page 2 page 5 page 8 page 9 page 10 page 11 page 11 page 13 page 13 page 13 page 23 page 23 page 24 page 25 page 28 page 30 page 35 page 37 page 38

3 Introduction by the Independent Chair Dear Colleagues, Welcome to the Blackburn with Darwen LSCB Annual report for the reporting year This has been another very busy and productive year for the LSCB and all partner agencies. It has been a year in which demand for services has been at an unprecedented level and LSCB colleagues have needed to review the steps they take to meet the additional need, including the commitment of significant additional resources and innovation on the part of statutory agencies, in particular, the local authority and the police. At the 2016 LSCB development day a commitment was made to adopt the ARK (assertive, reflective and knowledgeable practice) framework across all partners. It is pleasing that there is some evidence of this being effective and all partners should now be focussing on ARK and investing in their workforce to improve safeguarding competencies, and consequently outcomes for children and families. Annual Review - Section 1 The year has seen useful audit work undertaken by the LSCB, a programme of well-attended training and development of which evaluation shows positive impact, and the identification of learning from SCR and other review activity which is now being embedded into practice. It is pleasing to report good progress with all the priority areas identified for the previous year and the LSCB is now well placed to move into an agreed new set of priorities, alongside the myriad of ongoing routine work of the board and it s committees. As ever, I am grateful for all the hard work and commitment of all colleagues involved in this vital work, undertaken in increasingly challenging circumstances as demand rises and resources become more stretched. Nancy Palmer Independent Chair, Blackburn with Darwen LSCB page 1

4 Governance and Accountability The objectives of each of the groups that make up the Blackburn with Darwen (BwD) Local Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB) are provided below: LSCB (Chair: Independent Chair) Strategic oversight of the board s fulfilment of its statutory functions Strategic Partnership reporting on their fulfilment of their safeguarding responsibilities Health & Wellbeing Board, Children s Partnership Board, Community Safety Partnership, Youth Justice Service, Engage, Multi Agency Public Protection Arrangements (MAPPA), domestic abuse partnerships, Local Family Justice Board, etc. Examination and scrutiny of key safeguarding and child protection themes to identify how multi-agency arrangements can be improved and ensure the effectiveness of safeguarding arrangements and services Annual Review - Section 2 Business Group (Chair: Independent LSAB 1 or LSCB Chair) Co-ordinate the business and set the agenda of the boards Co-ordinate and monitor the business of the committees Provide guidance and direction to the LSAB/LSCB business of the Safeguarding Unit Production of annual reports Strategic sign-off for serious case reviews (SCRs) and safeguarding adult reviews (SARs) Communication & Engagement Committee (Chair: Training 2000) Multi-agency alignment of public safety messages, communication and engagement activities Raise the profile of the boards activities on training and safety messages Communication to practitioners and the public of strategic and operational planning messages Multi-agency practitioner awareness of lessons from reviews, training opportunities and practice change Multi-agency co-ordination of messages from participation and engagement of service users Direction on the maintenance and development of board websites and use of social media and technology for dissemination of safety messages page 2

5 Governance and Accountability Workforce Development Committee (Chair: Blackburn College) Monitor the effectiveness of single agency and multi-agency training provision Plan and provide LSCB/LSAB training courses (workshops, briefings and online learning) through the Training Needs Analysis Collate and report single agency and multi-agency training activity data Use training evaluations and impact assessments to revise and improve multi-agency training courses and recommend improvements to single agency training Development and implementation of a Learning & Development Strategy Development of online learning packages and monitor their effectiveness, impact and reach Inform and implement the Learning and Improvement Framework Annual Review - Section 2 Serious Case Review (SCR) Consideration Panel (Chair: Safeguarding Unit) Consider if cases meet the statutory threshold for undertaking a SCR Commission SCRs Recommend cases for multi-agency reviews or individual agency reviews where they do not meet the threshold for SCRs Children s Quality Assurance Committee (Chair: LSCB Independent Chair) Provide the LSCB with information and improvement recommendations about the quality, effectiveness and impact of inter-agency working in safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children Undertake and analyse Section 11 audits Collate findings from case reviews, audits and multi-professional discussion forums (MPDFs) to inform the Learning & Improvement Framework Monitor action plans from the case reviews and audits through the Learning & Improvement Framework Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) & Missing From Home Committee (MFH) (Chair: LSCB Independent Chair Strategic oversight on the operational effectiveness to tackle CSE, MFH, county lines safeguarding, trafficking/modern slavery and respond to online safeguarding Provide strategic and operational direction to the work of the Engage Team Promote local and Pan-Lancashire co-operation on CSE, MFH, county lines safeguarding, trafficking/ modern slavery and online safeguarding 1 Local Safeguarding Adult Board (LSAB) page 3

6 Governance and Accountability Pan-Lancashire Child Death Overview Process (CDOP) (Chair: Lancashire County Council Public Health) Undertake reviews of all child deaths so that the LSCB better understands how and why children in the area have died; use the findings to prevent other deaths and improve the health and safety of children Identify from death reviews significant risk factors and trends in individual child deaths and in the overall patterns of deaths in the area Ensure all unexpected deaths of children receive a co-ordinated response from all relevant agencies Pan-Lancashire & Cumbria Chairs & Business Managers Group (Chair: Pan-Lancashire LSCB Chairs) Strategic direction on cross border/sub-regional work on safeguarding issues Sub-regional consultation on national safeguarding issues Commission sub-regional protocols, policies and procedures Share learning across the sub-region on board leadership and governance issues Annual Review - Section 2 Pan-Lancashire & Cumbria Policies & Procedures Group (Chair: LSCB Business Managers) Develop and launch multi-agency policies and procedures on how different organisations will work together on safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people Revise multi-agency policies and procedures informed by learning and improvement findings, communication/participation findings, national guidance, research and best practice Develop policies and procedures across a wider footprint (sub-regional and regional) that ensures consistency for service users and service providers whilst retaining local determination of practice and management oversight. page 4

7 Governance and Accountability Relationship of LSCB with other partnership boards The LSCB, through the Independent Chair and officers within the Safeguarding Unit, attend and contribute to the working of a number of partnership meetings where children s safeguarding is a significant area of business. The key partnerships outlined in the national guidance Working Together to Safeguard Children are listed below with a brief description of bi-lateral reporting arrangements. Health and Wellbeing Board & Children s Partnership Board The Independent Chair of the LSCB attends the Health and Wellbeing Board to present the LSCB s Annual Report. The Director of Children s Services (DCS) and Executive Member for Children s Services are both members of the Health and Wellbeing Board. Officers from the Public Health team (who manage the business of the Health and Wellbeing Board), are members of the LSCB. The Health & Wellbeing Strategy for the period outlines the following outcomes for the borough s residents (related to taking action to enable all children to have the best outcomes as expressed in the statutory definition of safeguarding): Increase the life expectancy of residents and narrow the life expectancy gaps within the borough and with the rest of England Pursue policies that will maximise the number of years spent in good health Improve children and young people s emotional health and wellbeing Shift investment from treatment and care to prevention Ensure the borough has healthy places to live, work and play. Annual Review - Section 2 The Children s Partnership Board (CPB) is a sub-group of the Health & Wellbeing Board that leads on the priority area of Start Well. The Start Well area has four priority areas of action that are: Ensure an effective multi-agency early help offer provides the right help at the right time Support families through a consistent approach to parenting skills and support Improve children and young people s emotional health and wellbeing Embed routine enquiry about childhood adversity into everyday practice. To ensure that work is effective at both the strategic and operational levels, the LSCB s officers maintain a number of links with the CPB and its priority areas. At the strategic level, the Independent Chair of the LSCB is a member of the CPB. The Head of Safeguarding & Specialist Services and the Safeguarding Development Managers (Children & Adults) are members of a number of groups that monitor the priority areas. The DCS is the chair of the Children s Partnership Board and attends the LSCB and provides regular updates on progress in relation to the priorities. The LSCB is consulted regularly by the Public Health team in the planning of local services and the LSCB has contributed to the joint strategic needs analysis and the priority setting in the Health & Wellbeing Strategy ( ). page 5

8 Governance and Accountability Community Safety Partnership (CSP) The Head of Safeguarding & Specialist Services attends the Community Safety Partnership and the following links are made with groups within the partnership: The DCS chairs the Youth Justice Service (YJS) Management Board The Head of Safeguarding & Specialist Services chairs the Channel Panel (referral panel to identify preventative work for children and young people at risk of radicalisation) The Service Lead for the Youth Justice Service is a member of the Lancashire MAPPA Strategic Management Board The Head of Safeguarding & Specialist Services attends the Strategic Domestic Abuse Group and the Safeguarding Development Managers attend operational and task groups, advise on the domestic homicide review process and provide advice on the radicalisation agenda The CSP Manager attends the LSCB s committee on Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE), Missing from Home (MFH) and other sub-groups that collate intelligence on CSE victims, perpetrators and locations the LSCB CSE/MFH Committee also monitors local arrangements on trafficking/modern slavery, county lines safeguarding and online safeguarding The CSP Manager attends the LSCB & LSAB Quality Assurance Committees. Annual Review - Section 2 The CSP has funded in a number of projects to train practitioners on safeguarding issues (radicalisation & madressah safeguarding training), raise awareness in the community (including for children) on a range of safeguarding issues (domestic abuse, modern slavery, CSE, radicalisation) and funded operational activities to disrupt offenders of abuse particularly around CSE. page 6

9 Governance and Accountability Family Justice Board CAFCASS (Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service), the Local Authority s Legal Services and Children s Services are all members of the Local Family Justice Board (LFJB). Board members from CAFCASS and Legal Services report annually to the board on the progress made by the LFJB with the implementation of the reforms following the Family Justice Review. The updates provide an overview of the local and regional co-operation between the services, the oversight by the Judiciary in improving services and improving the timeliness of services for children and families subject to proceedings in both public and private law processes. Regional and Pan-Lancashire Groups The Safeguarding Unit officers maintain a close link with regional (North West England) and sub-regional (Pan-Lancashire and where applicable with Cumbria) groups to co-operate on joint initiatives and the sharing of knowledge/good practice. These groups allow the board to be involved in, and on occasions lead on, changes to regional safeguarding arrangements. Annual Review - Section 2 LSCB Independent Chair and Chief Officers The LSCB Chair meets twice a year with the Leader of the Council, Director of Children s Services (DCS) and Executive Lead Member. The LSCB Chair also meets quarterly with the Chief Executive of the Local Authority and with the DCS. Through the board s Business Group, the LSCB Chair meets on a quarterly basis with the Independent Chair of the LSAB and the Director of Adult Services. The Independent Chairs of the children and adult boards have maintained contact so that learning can be discussed and joint work can be agreed across the two safeguarding agendas. From April 2017, the LSCB Chair has been appointed as the LSAB Chair. Annually the LSCB & LSAB Chairs with the Chief Executive of the Local Authority host a meeting with chief executives of all the statutory partners of the board. This meeting allows the chief executives to discuss local and national safeguarding developments to identify key risk/improvement areas requiring chief officer oversight and individual/collective commitment to the agenda. Prevent Governance The Head of Safeguarding & Specialist Services chairs the Lancashire Channel Panel. The Head of Safeguarding & Specialist Services attends the Prevent Delivery Group and the Contest Board reporting regularly to the LSCB. Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangement (MAPPA) The Service Lead for the Youth Justice Service represents Blackburn with Darwen at the MAPPA Strategic Management Board. The Police and National Probation Service report annually on the effectiveness of MAPPA arrangements. Relationship of the LSCB with Political Structures - The Executive Member for Children s Services attends the LSCB (as a participating observer ) and the DCS reports through the Local Authority s accountability structure to the Leader of the Council, Opposition Lead Member, Executive Team and Council Committees (including scrutiny committee and corporate parenting groups). The LSCB Independent Chair attends Council Committees where required to present this report. page 7

10 Budget & Resources The Safeguarding Unit is funded by a range of agencies to deliver the functions of the boards across both the children and adult safeguarding agendas. Agreed contributions by partner agencies for , including adhoc contributions were as follows: Children s Services & Education 75,300 Adult Services 50,000 NHS BwD Clinical Commissioning Group 50,000 Primary & Secondary Schools 33,650 Lancashire Constabulary 35,995 National Probation Service 1,243 Community Rehabilitation Company 1,900 Blackburn College 4,000 Training ,500 CAFCASS 550 Training Charges 5,400 Annual Review - Section 2 Total 259,538 Contributions by most partner agencies for the year will remain broadly similar. As well as the above financial contributions, many LSCB agencies provide their staff to deliver the multi-agency training programmes and agencies commit staff time to attend as members of the committees and contribute to the variety of assurance activities that take place. The Safeguarding Unit s staffing and costs were approximately 261,000 in Below is a breakdown of the Safeguarding Unit s spending for the year: Salaries 183,271 Fees: Independent Facilitators, CDOP, TRI-X Site & Website 66,622 Training Costs 6,610 Office, Travel, Committee & Meeting cost 4,056 Total 260,559 page 8

11 Annual Review - Section 2 page 9 Attendance at Board Meetings The acceptable minimum attendance rate at board and committee meetings remains at 75%. The Independent Chair and Committee Chairs challenge throughout the year attendance likely to fall below the acceptable rate by any agency. In the table below, all agencies that attend the main board have their attendance at board and committee meetings published. At the committee level, there are other agencies that will attend meetings, but who do not attend the board meetings for brevity these agencies have not all been listed in the table below to focus on those agencies statutorily required to participate in the work of the LSCB. The overall attendance for each meeting is provided in the final line of the table inclusive of the agencies not listed in the table. Agency Board CSE/MFH Quality Assurance Workforce Development Children s Services & Education, BwDBC 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% Lancashire Constabulary 83% 80% 75% 25% 0% BwD NHS Clinical Commissioning Group 100% 60% 100% N/A N/A Adult Services, BwDBC 100% N/A N/A 75% 100% Public Health, BwDBC 100% 80% 25% N/A N/A NHS England 50% N/A N/A N/A N/A Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust 100% 80% 100% 75% 75% East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust 100% 100% 100% 50% N/A Change, Grow Live (Substance Misuse Service Provider) 83% 80% 75% N/A N/A National Probation Service 80% 0% 75% 50% N/A Community Rehabilitation Company 100% 0% 100% N/A N/A Youth Justice Service, BwDBC 83% 100% N/A N/A N/A CAFCASS 100% N/A N/A N/A N/A BwD Voluntary Community Faith (VCF) Sector 100% 50% 75% 75% 100% Lay Members 67% N/A N/A N/A N/A Schools 64% 60% 50% N/A 100% Blackburn College 100% N/A N/A 75% N/A Training % N/A N/A N/A 100% Average Attendance for the meeting (inclusive of those partners listed and not listed in the table) 88% 66% 80% 66% 82% Communication & Engagement

12 Blackburn with Darwen: the place, the people and their needs The Integrated Strategic Needs Assessment (ISNA) by the Public Health and Policy teams of the local authority has produced the summary assessment below of the borough to identify priorities to improve the outcomes for children and young people in the borough. The 2011 Census revealed that the borough had approximately 57,453 households and 147,489 residents, which was an increase on previous estimates. Blackburn with Darwen continues to have a younger than average age profile, with 28.8% of its population aged under 20, which is the fourth highest proportion in England. Based on the proportion of under-15 year-olds, Eurostat has identified it as one of the youngest towns in Europe. The borough s population is diverse, with 13.4% of residents having Indian heritage and 12.1% Pakistani. These are respectively the 11th highest and 6th highest proportions of any local authority in England. Annual Review - Section 3 Deprivation scores continue to be based on the 2010 Index of Multiple Deprivation, which ranks Blackburn with Darwen as the 17th most deprived borough in England. The borough has eight of its 91 Lower Super Output Areas (LSOAs) falling within the most deprived 1% nationally, and 31 falling within the most deprived 10%. The generally high levels of deprivation have consequences for the borough as a whole, and the contrast between neighbourhoods also leads to significant internal health and social care inequalities. Research also identifies that in the borough, 12% of the adult population are impacted by four or more adverse childhood experiences (from a list of ten experiences that range from parental separation, parental substance misuse, parental criminal involvement or domestic, physical, sexual or emotional abuse) compared to 9% nationally. 47% of the borough s population had not experienced any adverse childhood experiences compared to 52% nationally. Across a range of indicators (poverty, families with multiple problems, children involved in risk taking behaviours, child/infant mortality, emotional health, sexual health, oral health, road traffic accidents, violent and sexual crimes) there remain challenges for the borough to ensure children receive the best start and foundation for their adult lives. Key partners in Blackburn with Darwen across the public sector and the voluntary sector have been implementing an approach to integrated service delivery based on a localities model. The aim is for the partner agencies to work in each of the four localities to manage the particular demands of those communities so that services are targeted at the prevention or early help end of need rather than rely on high-cost protection services. Through the Health and Wellbeing Board three strands of work in particular are contributing to this delivery model: Prevention & Early Help Transforming Lives Integrated Health and Social Care. page 10

13 Monitoring Activity of the LSCB Case File and Practice Audits The Quality Assurance Committee audited the following areas of practice in : Domestic abuse Effectiveness of the child protection process. Domestic Abuse The audit analysed the characteristics of service provision and how reporting of incidents, response by agencies and service pathways were being effectively followed so that both domestic abuse risks and child safeguarding risks were being addressed. Cases selected for the audit involved children known to services at Child in Need and Child Protection levels. In all the cases the perpetrator of domestic abuse was male, though the audit in one case identified both adults to be perpetrators and victims of abuse (situational couple violence). Annual Review - Section 4 From the range of partner information collated for the audit, the adult characteristics identified under half of females and nearly nine in ten males had displayed behaviours (besides domestic abuse) that would expose their children to adverse childhood experiences. Children s Services, police, domestic abuse services and community health services were aware of domestic abuse incidents, but GPs and probation services were not always fully aware. Characteristics of the children identified that a small number of children were known to have attended acute health services, had gone missing from home, were missing education and experienced fixed period exclusions from school, though there was no indication that these experiences/features were related to domestic abuse. 60% of the cases reviewed, had at some stage been referred to MARAC 2 but not all agencies were fully aware of this and only a few agencies had recorded the actions agreed at MARAC to protect the family. Five cases were audited in detail by collating chronologies, requiring each agency to audit their practice and then contribute to a joint partner discussion of the practice in the case. In one case the domestic abuse responses and safeguarding responses were deemed to be in line with expected practice. In three cases the responses were largely appropriate, but some unmet needs for the victim and children had not been identified. In one case the domestic abuse response and safeguarding responses were not considered to be in line with expected practice, leaving risk issues in the case unaddressed. The audit results have informed the review of the Domestic Abuse Strategy and informed the police s review of the Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) arrangements. Children s Services has revised its processes for managing child in need cases including strengthening their management oversight arrangements. Across the health economy the sharing of information between primary care and community care services has been changed to ensure there is greater awareness of domestic abuse incidents. 2 MARAC Multi-agency risk assessment conferences for victims of domestic abuse page 11

14 Monitoring Activity of the LSCB Effectiveness of the Child Protection Process The audit analysed the quality of multi-agency input into child protection meetings (initial conferences, review conferences and core groups) through case file auditing and focus groups with the relevant professionals that are regularly involved in the meetings. Nearly one sixth of cases where a child was on a child protection plan at the time of the audit were reviewed by the auditor. The audit found that invitations to parents about the various meetings was always undertaken, but invitations to services after the initial conference was not routine and relied on the agency practitioner to note the date, time and venue of any subsequent meeting from the last meeting or minutes that were circulated (unless there were changes in dates or venue where notification by invitation occurred). Focus group practitioners requested that invitations for the initial conference meetings should be sent out sooner to enable them to prepare reports and ensure the right practitioner attended; they also requested invitations be sent out for review conferences and core groups to remind them of the next meeting. Annual Review - Section 4 Attendance at meetings was considered to be good, but the audit did find that GPs and practitioners delivering services to address adult risks were not routinely present. The audit also found that as services ceased to work with a family they stopped attending the meetings and so for children on plans for a longer period, there were fewer agencies making the decisions on risk reduction and impact of services. The reports presented by agencies at conference meetings were generally good, but the auditor commented that in some cases they lacked detail about the services offered and lacked analysis on the impact the service had made to reduce risk. The auditor felt that improvements were required in case notes on how the report was shared with parents, and agencies should consistently use the LSCB report template. The recording in case conference minutes on how the legal threshold of significant harm had been met, or continued to be met was not always clear and the minutes did not always record the discussion practitioners had to agree that the threshold had been met (or when disagreements occurred). The audit of core groups identified that the quality of practice varied and the whole administration and child record processes from invitation to minute circulation requires review to update and refresh it. During there has been substantial focus in Children s Services on the rising number of children on child protection plans and this has led to substantial investment in staff and training (social workers, Independent Reviewing Officers (IROs) and business support) to ensure systems and process meet statutory requirements. The LSCB s training has also been revised for to ensure partners also benefit from training and helps to assist in reducing the number of children on plans. page 12

15 Monitoring Activity of the LSCB Serious Case Reviews (SCRs) There were three SCR referrals received by the LSCB in from partner agencies; all three incidents were also reported by the local authority through the national Serious Incident Notification process. For one of the cases the Youth Justice Services shared their serious incident report with the LSCB to quality assure the learning the service had identified in the case. In , one SCR was commissioned and this was completed in One of the three SCRs commissioned in has also been completed and two are ongoing. For the two SCRs that have been completed, the majority of the learning has been implemented and is being monitored by the Quality Assurance Committee. Due to ongoing processes in both cases, the final reports have not been published. Dissemination of lessons from both cases has happened through briefings to practitioners, but wider public dissemination will take place once the reports can be published. In both cases the lessons reflect the safeguarding practice issues that are contained in later sections of this report. Annual Review - Section 4 Multi-Agency Concise Reviews (MACRs) In there was one referral submitted to the LSCB by the Child Death Overview Panel to consider undertaking a MACR. The SCR Panel has decided to await the findings from public law care proceedings before a decision is finally made to commission any case review. Performance Monitoring & Quality Assurance The LSCB s Quality Assurance and Performance Monitoring (QA/PM) Declaration is used to collate performance information and quality assurance information from individual agencies. The declaration seeks data on the volume of safeguarding activity that takes place within agencies and seeks analysis on what that information means (the impact safeguarding activity has made to children s outcomes, the impact activity has made in improving the quality of practice and improving the safety of the local multi-agency safeguarding system). A brief summary of each agency s declaration is provided in this section of the report. page 13

16 Monitoring Activity of the LSCB Children s Services & Education The number of children open to a child and family (CAF) plan at early help level has increased by 13% between and Schools and colleges were Lead Professionals in 43% of CAFs in , this has now increased to 52% with a corresponding decrease in Lead Professionals from the Early Years service. The proportion of CAFs that are led by health providers and voluntary sector agencies remained similar to previous years. The rate per child population of referrals being received in the MASH 3 has fallen by 12% between and (at the time of writing this report it is understood that referrals in had started to rise again). Despite the fall in referrals, the number of referrals accepted for assessment at s.17 or s.47 levels by the MASH increased by 30% and nearly a third of these referrals resulted in an assessment being completed at s.47 level. The use of the risk sensible framework by partners, demand created by domestic abuse incidents and improving multi-agency screening in the MASH has been attributed to the increase. The additional cases warranting assessment resulted in a larger number of children subject to a child protection plan (40% increase since ) and increase in children becoming looked after (9% increase since ). Timescales for completing statutory assessments improved slightly from 71% within timescale in , to 75% within timescale in despite the 30% increase in the number of assessments. This has resulted from social work teams being separated into specialist assessment and longer-term work teams during the year. However, the 40% increase in child protection plans impacted on the timeliness of child protection process - only 64% of initial conferences and 68% of review conferences were in timescale in compared to 82% and 80% respectively in The increase in children looked after (LAC) also impacted the timeliness of LAC Review meetings, down from 98% in timescale in to 92% in Annual Review - Section 4 Analysis by the local authority on the increases in children subject to a child protection plans identifies a number of issues that are not wholly in the control of the local authority, and where they are, it will take a mediumterm approach to resolve: the prevalence of co-morbidity of risk and need factors in a significant number of cases, predominantly the toxic trio (domestic abuse, mental ill health and substance misuse), that is complex to assess with entrenched family behaviours, impacting on the sustainability and success of services; austerity in wider services resulting in fewer services that can be offered and risk escalating earlier in cases; growth in social worker caseloads of child protection cases resulting in less time being afforded to child in need cases that then have to escalate to child protection cases due to increasing need and development of risk; and a less experienced social work workforce, reliant on larger number of newly qualified social workers and newly promoted team managers. In January 2017 an immediate short-term response was agreed that introduced an external company to manage a proportion of child in need cases so that social worker caseloads could be reduced. The service also agreed a medium term strategy that covered a range of service re-design, investments and training actions to improve services. Due to capacity issues in the social work service and new quality assurance standards, the quality of social work was judged by internal auditing to be good (or better) in only 54% of cases in compared to 74% in The quality assurance standards in introduced limiting standards so that areas like voice of the child or SMART planning (and others across nearly 70 standards) that are judged below the good standard cannot result in the overall case being graded good. Family Group Conferencing (FGC) was introduced in 2016 and in the year , 29 families (57 children) that were at child protection stage, at public law outline (pre-proceedings) stage or children in care benefited from the service. Analysis of outcomes in cases closed after FGC intervention identified 93% of families had improved 3 MASH Multi-agency safeguarding hub receives all public and agency concerns about children potentially requiring services at statutory s.17 (child in need) & s.47 (child protection) levels page 14

17 Monitoring Activity of the LSCB their circumstances and de-escalation occurred in two-thirds of cases (away from legal proceedings or child protection processes). Six months after a FGC case closing, 90% of families had sustained their improvements. There has been substantial investment in the service identified for with focus on preventing cases escalating to child protection as well as cases meeting the de-escalation from legal proceedings criteria. The number of children supported by the Engage Team remains similar to , though a larger proportion of new referrals to the team had not been known previously to child protection services. Most children once assessed by the Engage Team and where there are no CSE risks continue to be offered services, including services at child in need or child protection levels due to other identified unmet needs and unaddressed risks. 84% of Engage Team cases are assessed with medium or high risks associated with CSE. A quarter of children who went missing from home in are open to the Engage Team due to vulnerabilities to CSE through persistent missing episodes. 30% of children open to the Engage Team were of Asian ethnicity and 13% were male. Annual Review - Section 4 The Engage Team also completes return home interviews for children who have been missing from home or runaway. 74% of children accepted the offer of a return home interview and 80% of these children receive the interview in statutory timescales. The number of contacts to the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) has increased by 17% in since just under a quarter of these contacts result in advice being provided or referrals being forwarded to other LADOs. The number of accepted referrals has fallen by 7% in and the sources of referral remain the same as previous years with statutory services making up the majority of referrals. In a quarter of referrals the allegation made was deemed to be unfounded or false. Two-thirds of the remaining allegations were substantiated following enquiries and a third were unsubstantiated. In four-fifths of referrals, the employee remained in employment with action identified by the employer to improve the employee s skills and competencies; in a fifth of cases the employee ceased to work for the employer, most as a result of dismissal. Due to the increase in numbers of children subject to child protection plans and those entering public care, the number of Independent Reviewing Officers (IROs) has been increased by a third in IROs quality assure the social work reports and have graded the quality of child protection conference reports to be better than the quality of reports for looked after children reviews. Work is agreed for to assist social workers to improve the quality of reports. Of the children reported to be missing from education, 71% were found during the year. All remaining cases have active investigations and in half of these cases children are understood to be abroad. BwD Council, Legal Services Care proceedings issued by the service on behalf of the local authority increased by 16% in compared to The number of pre-proceedings Public Law Outline (PLO) cases was not monitored throughout the year, but comparison between the first half of and first half of indicates a 53% increase between the periods. The Local Family Justice Board (LFJB) monitors the timeliness of care proceedings against the national target (to complete care proceedings in a maximum period of 26 weeks) 69% of cases in achieved a final outcome within 26 weeks across Lancashire courts compared to 74% in The LFJB also monitors cases that are at risk of or not meeting the target timescale over this averaged around 7 cases in any monitoring period during the year; in this average had increased to 12 cases. The additional demand for the service is thus impacting on the timeliness of completing care proceedings (and pre-proceedings) work. page 15

18 Monitoring Activity of the LSCB CAFCASS (Child and Family Court Advisory Support Service) Public Law demand for Blackburn with Darwen children has increased by 23% between and meaning that the rate of care applications is now 80% higher than the national average. Between and the duration of completing care applications fell from an average of 33 weeks to 27 weeks, making substantial progress towards improving the timeliness of care proceedings towards the national target of 26 weeks. Due to the ongoing additional demand, care proceedings for the borough s children in were averaging 30 weeks compared to a national average of 31 weeks in the same period. The demand in the local CAFCASS service for Private Law cases has remained fairly static since , increasing by 2.5% in The timeliness of completing processes in this part of the CAFCASS service remains strong with the average duration to complete proceedings around a fifth lower than the national average. Over a quarter of Private Law cases involving Blackburn with Darwen children required additional court directed reports to assess the welfare of the child (similar proportion nationally) and in around 5% of cases a court appointed Guardian was required (higher than the 1% nationally required). Annual Review - Section 4 Nationally and locally the service has been focused on improving the quality of practice, improving supervision of staff and achieving child focused outcomes. This is being completed through a variety of methods: revised quality assurance frameworks on practice and child outcome measures, new strategies, piloting new services, and learning through consultation with service users and staff to improve multi-agency service offers. Community Safety Partnership - The community safety team develops strategy and provides and commissions services in support of vulnerable people with a focus on those persons that are victims of crime or abuse. Strategies and service commissioning on domestic abuse, anti-social behaviour, preventing radicalisation and modern slavery are the key focus areas in the team. Overall crime incidents through police reporting has increased by 15% in compared to including a 25% increase in crime reports for sexual offences against children. The community safety team s analysis identifies a higher number of reports for violent crimes and changes in police recording practices for the increases. Similarly, domestic abuse incidents in have also risen by 17% and assaults that are domestic abuse related have increased by 15%. High risk incidents of domestic abuse have also increased leading to an 8% increase in cases referred to MARAC. The number of children involved with victims referred to MARAC has increased by 27%. Anti-social behaviour incidents in have decreased by 2% compared to incidents in The Domestic Abuse Board has agreed the new Domestic Abuse Strategy including new initiatives to tackle repeat, high-risk and complex cases (where there are related issues of substance misuse and adult mental health), services for perpetrators and training for professionals. Community and professional awareness sessions on radicalisation continue to be provided, reaching over 6,000 children and 2,300 professionals during Community and professional awareness on modern slavery/trafficking has also been undertaken through poster campaigns, training and conferences. page 16

19 Monitoring Activity of the LSCB Lancashire Constabulary the number of vulnerable child referrals completed by frontline officers for Blackburn with Darwen children has increased by 30% between and and their analysis identifies that improvements in recognition of safeguarding issues and an embedding of early action initiatives are the main reasons for the increase. In the Early Action teams (at local community level) and in child protection teams there have been increased resources and additional training provided. Over 85% of child referrals the police undertake involve physical abuse, sexual abuse, sexual exploitation, neglect, domestic abuse and missing from home. In the remaining 15% of referrals, issues involve forced marriage, honour abuse, deaths of children, modern slavery/trafficking, female genital mutilation, financial abuse, radicalisation, online child abuse and early action. The constabulary has undertaken a number of internal audits on the quality of child protection practice and adherence to processes all have identified learning about the quality of record keeping and improving management oversight that are being addressed through training. During the year, the constabulary has undergone a number of peer reviews and thematic inspections. Findings and learning are regularly reported to the LSCB. Annual Review - Section 4 The constabulary s review of the MASH has led to a pilot of new arrangements in one part of Lancashire; the results of which will inform future arrangements. Similarly, the constabulary is piloting different child protection initiatives across its three divisional areas. In the East division these include: new structures and resources for child protection teams, piloting work on disrupting modern slavery/trafficking and initiatives to tackle county lines safeguarding. National Probation Services (NPS) - Work has been undertaken in the last year to strategically review all aspects of NPS work relevant to safeguarding children and a strategic action plan is being monitored by the service s leadership. This strategy requires all staff to re-read national and local policies on safeguarding, a pilot to quality assure referrals to MASH, revise offender management plans to include objectives to safeguard children from any offender risks and an update to flagging child concerns on offender case records. Practitioners in the service are already mandated to complete child protection, domestic abuse, CSE and Prevent training. As a result of the update to flagging child concerns on case records the number of cases for Blackburn with Darwen offenders with a flag for child concerns has increased by over 60%. The number of offenders whose children (or children who live in their household) are on a child protection plan has increased by a third between and The NPS currently has one member of staff in MASH whose role is to process police referrals to ensure offender managers are aware of police incidents where safeguarding issues are identified. At the end of the year, all high and medium risk police reports had been processed, but a backlog of cases graded at standard risk across the three Pan-Lancashire local authority areas remained to be processed. The NPS has secured funding for a further member of staff to address the backlog and meet the demand in MASH. Cumbria & Lancashire Community Rehabilitation Company (CRC) Practitioners in the service are mandated to complete child protection, domestic abuse, CSE and Prevent training. In addition, relevant officers and managers are mandated to attend practice development and risk assessment workshops where safeguarding practice and assessment are key areas of training. The service has practitioners co-located in multi-agency Transforming Lives Early Help locality hubs and work with a range of partners to deliver services to offenders and their families. page 17

20 Monitoring Activity of the LSCB Public Health the team commission a wide range of services from a variety of large and small providers to prevent health needs arising or addressing targeted health needs at a community level. The commissioning of local child health improvement services are focused on the needs identified in the Health & Wellbeing Strategy and all planning of services includes input from the Safeguarding Boards on provider s safeguarding arrangements. The Public Health team use regular contract monitoring where both quantitative and qualitative measures are used to monitor adherence to contracts, including safeguarding requirements. The information from contract monitoring is used to inform both management reporting and strategy development/monitoring across a number of early help and safeguarding areas: substance misuse, healthy child programme, early intervention, adverse childhood experiences, special educational needs, risk taking behaviours in adolescents etc. BwD Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) The CCG directly commissions a variety of services that impact on children s safeguarding (including hospital, ambulance, mental health, multi-agency specialist safeguarding nurses and continuing health care) and plays an important part as the lead health commissioner in developing and monitoring strategic arrangements for safeguarding (GP & Primary Care services). During the year the safeguarding functions of the CCG have merged with East Lancashire CCG to improve capacity and improve processes. In terms of the commissioning of specialist safeguarding nurses, the CCGs have been able to combine resources to re-commission a more enhanced service that can work to one set of contractual specifications across a range of issues like MASH, domestic abuse, CSE, youth offending and looked after children. By the end of , 21 GP surgeries in the Borough had completed their CQC 4 inspection with only two graded inadequate (including the safe domain) and the rest graded good or outstanding. Two surgeries with a good grade received a requires improvement grade under the domain of safe. The CCG is working with all four surgeries to improve their safeguarding arrangements. Annual Review - Section 4 East Lancashire Hospitals Trust The Trust s Safeguarding Team report that in the second half of the year in , the number of complex cases referred to them has increased by just over a quarter compared to the same period in The referrals received remain predominantly from hospital teams with around two-thirds of internal referrals from maternity, paediatrics, emergency department and CAMHS 5 practitioners. The external referrals (other health providers, police and social care) continue to account for a fifth of the team s overall demand. Safeguarding concerns across the whole spectrum of issues can result in a complex case tracking process being initiated by the safeguarding team with domestic abuse, mental health/learning difficulties, neglect and children requiring paediatric medical examinations accounting for nearly a half of cases. During the year, increased consultation provided by the safeguarding team to hospital practitioners has resulted in a 20% fall in the number of referrals practitioners have made to the MASH; the safeguarding team s liaison and consultation with MASH practitioners has increased by 35%. 88% of staff within the Trust have completed the required level of safeguarding training in The Trust continues to audit practice regularly and has identified both improved practice and areas for improvement and continues to make good progress in areas identified in their last CQC audit, SCR learning and section 11 audits. 4 CQC Care Quality Commission 5 CAMHS Child adolescent mental health service page 18

21 Monitoring Activity of the LSCB Lancashire Care Foundation Trust The Trust s Safeguarding Team report that in the second half of , the number of contacts they received increased by 10% compared to the same period in Practitioners concerns relating to children s exposure to domestic abuse, the impact of parental mental ill health, emotional abuse and neglect were the main reasons for the contacts. The team also attend MARACs collating relevant community and primary health service information for the meetings. Across the Trust, 88% of staff required to complete training have done so to the recommended level in , up from 76% in Through the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), the Trust is commissioned to provide a number of specialist safeguarding nurses: CSE, looked after children and in the MASH. In the latter service, due to changes in pathways the specialist nurses have experienced a decrease in demand; in the other services, pathway and process changes have resulted in a significant increase in demand. During the year, the Trust was inspected by CQC and received an overall grade of good across the Trust. Within the safeguarding team and in the team providing services to children and families a number of recommendations were made to strengthen safeguarding practice. A key area for improvement includes how practitioners access safeguarding supervision. The Trust has undertaken a number of audits to improve the Safeguarding Team s responses and oversight of safeguarding cases. As the health and social care integration agenda proceeds, there is ongoing health integration across the Pennine Lancashire footprint the Trust s commissions across the two CCGs within the footprint continue to be reviewed and are resulting in new arrangements. The re-design of services continues to create challenges across the local health economy. Annual Review - Section 4 Changing Lives The service has received an average of 200 plus referrals per month in , four-fifths of these referrals through police reported incidents. A fifth of referrals involve male victims of domestic abuse. All referrals receive responses to contact victims and offer services. Over the last four reporting periods that the LSCB has received reports from the service, it has used different measures to report demand and capacity data and so trends and comparisons cannot be made. In the year, a number of internal audits have been completed, but the description of the findings and what action the agency has taken to improve practice and safeguarding systems is very limited. Whilst expectations of the service evolve since its contract started in June 2015, consistency in performance and quality data will need to be developed with the Community Safety Partnership so that a meaningful analysis of engagement rates, service provision, quality of practice and outcomes achieved can be undertaken. Blackburn Darwen District without Abuse (BDDWA) During , the service has experienced a slight fall in referrals of 9% compared to Whilst the service is no longer the local authority commissioned domestic abuse service, it continues to receive referrals from statutory partners and during the year it received 45% of its referrals from other local services. Self-referrals from victims now make up 55% of its referrals, up from 39% in According to data the service holds on MARAC, the number of Blackburn with Darwen cases assessed at high risk and referred to the Panel remained static, but the proportion of cases that were rereferred increased from 21% in to 28% in The agency s analysis further identifies that 50% of victims in MARAC cases had co-morbidity of mental health and/or substance misuse needs with domestic abuse risks. The agency has identified that funding has significantly decreased and is impacting on their capacity to deliver all services. Despite this the service engages with 99% of its service users and has a repeat referral rate of only 4%. In the second half of , over half of the victim therapy programmes delivered were for young people. It has also delivered healthy relationship sessions in schools covering over 4,000 pupils and workshops to over 1,400 young people on forced marriage. page 19

22 Monitoring Activity of the LSCB Change, Grow, Live (CGL) At the end of , around half of cases held by the Go2 service (young people s substance misuse) had identified safeguarding concerns. Throughout this has increased and averaged 94% in caseloads. The service has begun piloting the REACh (Routine Enquiry ACEs) programme and introduced the MPACT (moving parents and children together) programme the former improving the assessment of underlying needs and risks and the latter improving the planning of multi-agency services to reduce addiction and the impact on children. Case management reviews are regularly completed and have resulted in new systems and processes and identification of training needs. Child Action North West (CANW) the agency provides a range of services commissioned by the local authority, youth justice service and some local schools. The local authority and youth justice services provide assessment and support services to vulnerable child from young carers to young offenders. Services also include advocacy/ mentoring for vulnerable children involved in multi-agency safeguarding processes. School commissioned services provide early help services. The agency also provides an independent fostering service that was inspected during the year receiving a good grade. Annual Review - Section 4 Young People s Services the service provides a range of activities covering leisure, adventure, youth participation and holiday provision at universal level and targeted levels. For children and young people accessing targeted services, this can include children identified for additional services as part of their CAF, CiN, CP or LAC plans. Demand for the Targeted Youth Support (TYS) offer remains higher than capacity and funding has been secured to recruit an additional youth worker to increase capacity. The TYS follows the youth work curriculum and focuses on three strands of risk issues: substance misuse; healthy relationships (including CSE risks); and domestic abuse. Quality assurance of TYS cases is undertaken in supervision with management oversight and review provided on all cases escalating from universal to targeted services. Due to a large proportion of the workforce working in evenings and holiday periods, training and improving the safeguarding competencies of the workforce remains a challenge that is met by bespoke in-house training delivered by the service s safeguarding lead and a youth consultant. Over the year, staff have accessed 16 different courses on safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children. The service attends a number of LSCB committees and is the lead service to develop the borough s Adolescent Strategy. In the past year a number of staff in the service have been trained to undertake return home interviews working with the Engage Team when there is additional demand. Troubled Families of the families involved with programme during , 50% had children open to Children s Services at levels 3 and 4 of the Continuum of Need & Response Framework. The other 50% of children were also known to early help or targeted services at level 2 of the continuum. Outcomes achieved for families through intervention work, parenting courses or signposting to services includes improving mental wellbeing, reducing social exclusion, addressing finance/housing problems, sustaining improvements for children following step-down from level 3 and 4 interventions, improving school attendance and reducing school exclusions, reducing anti-social behaviour or crime, reduction in domestic abuse in families and returning adults into employment. The programme is led by Family Intervention Workers and partner agency workers (PCSOs, fire officers, community officers, voluntary sector workers etc.) all of whom receive training on working with families that have complex needs and safeguarding. Due to the multiple and complex needs of the families in the programme, external referrals have to be made for parenting courses, respite care, youth work, mental health services etc. Capacity issues and waiting times across all these services remains a challenge for the Troubled Families programme. page 20

23 Monitoring Activity of the LSCB Together Housing the company provides social housing and supported housing facilities for homeless families. Safeguarding issues are mainly identified by housing officers or trades staff in the social housing side of the business, whereas in the supported housing facilities families already have multiple unmet needs. Throughout the year online-learning and refresher courses on safeguarding have been promoted and monitoring of training compliance has been undertaken by the company s risk and audit committee. As part of a review of neighbourhood services, safeguarding arrangements were also reviewed resulting in investment in a new post to co-ordinate safeguarding issues that arise. The number of safeguarding alerts raised by staff in has doubled from the number of alerts in Blackburn College The College categorises safeguarding cases (alerts) across a broad remit of issues (risks identified in young people, information sharing requests for statutory assessments and attendance requested for safeguarding meetings) and in the number of alerts involving young people increased by 105% compared to Alerts relating to mental health issues (ranging from emotional wellbeing to self-harm and suicidal ideation) increased by 100% compared to the previous year and information sharing requests resulted in 25% more alerts being recorded. The College attribute the higher demand to new recording guidelines being introduced and fewer external sources of support being available. The College has reviewed resourcing of the safeguarding team and has increased both casework and management resources. Audit of casework identified positive multi-agency working and impact, but highlighted the need to improve the case tracking IT system (that the College has now invested in). In 96% of cases where safeguarding interventions had taken place, students were retained in education/training. 98% of students report that they felt safe and supported whilst at the College. The College was inspected by Ofsted during the year and safeguarding was graded as effective. Annual Review - Section 4 Summary of the Monitoring Activity of the LSCB In the second half of the year all agencies were asked to identify the challenges they faced to meet safeguarding expectations. Over 15 different issues were identified with the two issues mentioned most being: managing demand in an environment where the agency or their partners have reducing resources; and ensuring their workforce is appropriately supported to undertake their responsibilities through access to training and supervision. At the 2016 board development day event, a framework to improve safeguarding practice was agreed and has been used to analyse agency performance returns (along with findings from other LSCB learning and improvement activity). The framework is called ARK Assertive practitioners with empathy and compassion; Reflective practice; and Knowledgeable practitioners. It is important to note that agencies have highlighted the latter two parts of the framework as areas where they face their greatest challenges to continue to improve safeguarding arrangements. In the table below is a brief analysis that triangulates the various quality assurance activity of the LSCB under the ARK framework. page 21

24 Monitoring Activity of the LSCB Assertive Practitioners (with empathy and compassion) Auditing activity and SCRs highlight that parental noncompliance remains a feature in complex cases and practitioners need to be more assertive when the required changes in parenting capacity are not evident. The audits and SCRs are also finding that practitioners should be challenging each other more on issues of thresholds and the impact that services are making to reduce risk. SCRs and practitioner forums (MPDF) identify that services are being offered in a timely manner and practitioners are showing considerable compassion and empathy, clearly focused on the risk issues and trying to assist the family to reduce risk factors. Reflective Practice Section 11 audit findings, QA/ PM returns and SCRs are all demonstrating that reflective supervision processes for frontline practitioners, in particular newly qualified staff, are not consistently embedded. They identify that general management oversight takes place and appraisals are conducted, but regular reviews of cases where reflection, challenge and support is offered is not consistent across all agencies. SCRs are finding that in complex cases when a significant number of incidents take place identifying distress in families, statutory requirements result in responding to all incidents leaving little time to reflect, at team or multi-agency levels, on the underlying risk issues to be addressed that are critical to returning the family to a safe level of functioning. Knowledgeable Practitioners Section 11 audit findings and QA/PM returns are highlighting that achieving and maintaining training compliance rates remains a significant challenge for agencies. The QA/PM returns highlight that resource reduction has resulted in significant organisational memory being lost. The practitioner forums (MPDFs) have identified that recruitment problems and reliance on a workforce that at times can have a significant proportion of newly qualified staff (frontline and mangers), impacts on the knowledge within an organisation. SCRs and MPDFs are finding that practitioners and mangers are sometimes unaware of services, policies and pathways. Annual Review - Section 4 page 22

25 Participation To identify what issues and safeguarding arrangements require priority for improvement, the LSCB collates information from direct and indirect participation activities with practitioners, children and their parents/carers. The Communications and Engagement Committee receives regular updates from the Participation Steering Group on the progress being made on participation activities by partners. The LSCB undertakes direct work with practitioners through Multi-Professional Discussion Forums and asks frontline practitioners and their managers about how safeguarding arrangements within a particular theme can be improved by the LSCB partners. The LSCB uses the participation work of partnership bodies like the Health & Wellbeing Board (Healthwatch), Children s Partnership Board and the borough s multi-agency Participation Steering Group to identify what children and their parents/carers would like to be prioritised for service and process improvement. Annual Review - Section 5 Young people attended the LSCB on two occasions to present their participation work: the Peace Charter for schools and the Amplify Champion s consultation on abuse and neglect. Similar to previous years, the board with Lancashire and Blackpool LSCBs undertook awareness raising on CSE during a CSE week of activities. The week involved public awareness events, awareness raising in schools and additional training for practitioners in all agencies. Multi-Professional Discussion Forums (MPDFs) The LSCB has undertaken four MPDFs during the year covering the following themes: Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) Injuries and bruising in non-mobile children Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children (UASC) Modern Slavery/Trafficking. The themes covered during the year were varied, but feedback from practitioners identifies two common requests: Continuing to raise awareness about local policies, procedures and pathways to services, including where to access advice on them Availability of training for safeguarding themes and keeping the training up to date. The Communications and Engagement Committee has developed during the year a variety of one-page snapshots on a range of safeguarding themes to ensure essential information on both the requests above is provided in a easy to access/display and easy to read format. In the snapshots have covered the themes of: CSE, domestic abuse, female genital mutilation (FGM), modern slavery/trafficking, online safety, private fostering and radicalisation. page 23

26 Participation Child and Parent/Carer Consultations The multi-agency Participation Steering Group chaired by the Director of Children s Services has a number of priorities each year to improve participation activities within partner agencies. The Participation Steering Group s annual report for outlines the activities a whole range of agencies have undertaken to increase the levels of participation. Children and young people have been involved in a range of strategic activities where their participation has been sought that can be categorised as follows: Involvement in recruitment and ownership of meetings involvement in panels and decision making to recruit staff; Consultations regarding new/revised services; Development of policies, communication tools and training of staff; and Involvement in conferences and communication campaigns to ensure the voice of the child is reflected in awareness campaigns so that their experience of abuse/neglect is heard effectively and explain how services can assist. Annual Review - Section 5 Partners in the Participation Steering Group are committed to improving their participation activities and have continued to seek independent accreditation, through the Investors in Children award. In , 22 services had achieved the accreditation or have been re-accredited compared to 16 in During the year, two notable strategic participation activities took place (Amplify Champions consultation; and the Adolescent Strategy survey) seeking children and young people s views about abuse, risky behaviours, crime/anti-social behaviour and family breakdowns. Together the two events identified the following improvements that should be made to awareness raising activities to assist children and young people keep safe from harm: Providing people to talk to who children and young people trust in the Adolescent Strategy survey, youth workers were identified as professionals that children could approach more and were viewed as trusted More respect from adults, especially teachers and the police Education and awareness from primary school age about abuse this includes improving understanding of the law; using case studies to help understand real life cases, examples and shared experiences that children and young people can relate to; providing information (and services) in places children and young people physically access rather than online; and family members becoming more aware and understanding (providing specialist advice to the whole family). The LSCB has continued to deliver Total Respect (Children s Rights) training to improve knowledge on understanding the rights of the child in service provision and increasing their participation to design and influence local services. page 24

27 Training Provision The joint LSCB and LSAB Learning and Development Programme sets out a variety of methods of delivering training courses with the aim to suit different styles of learning and in recognition that time away from the workplace is increasingly difficult. The range of learning opportunities includes half day and full day face to face courses, two hour briefing sessions, conference style events, online courses and workbooks. Face to Face Training In the table below, data on the range of face to face courses (including joint courses with the LSAB), briefings and conference style events (commissioned by the LSCB) is provided. Course No. of Places Offered Attended Working Together to Safeguard Children Case Conference Processes Safeguarding for Drivers (taxis, buses, contractors) Domestic Abuse Briefing - Complex Situations Dealing with Disclosures and Risk Assessments in Domestic Abuse Domestic Abuse and Impact on Children and Adults Engaging Perpetrators of Domestic Abuse in Conversations to Motivate Change Honour Based Abuse/Forced Marriage/Female Genital Mutilation Child Sexual Exploitation Boys & Child Sexual Exploitation Traumatic Bonding & Child Sexual Exploitation Application of Prevent in a Safeguarding Context in Education Prevent in Practice Briefing Total Respect (Children s Rights) Hate Crime Hidden Harm Mental Health Issues in Safeguarding Children and Adults Modern Slavery/Trafficking Managing Allegations of Professional Abuse Safer Recruitment Safeguarding in Madressahs Learning from Serious Case Reviews Learning from Domestic Homicide Reviews/Safeguarding Adult Reviews Totals Did Not Attend (on day) Annual Review - Section 6 page 25

28 Training Provision Across all courses covering safeguarding children there was a 95% attendance rate in which was slightly better than last year (91%). There was a 91% take-up rate for the training spaces in , up slightly from 89% the year before. The Community Safety Partnership, Public Health Team, Clinical Commissioning Group, NHS England, Police & Crime Commissioner and the police commission a variety of services and providers of these services are contracted to also provide training and briefing sessions for a range of safeguarding issues covering self-harm, suicidal ideation, substance misuse, adverse childhood experiences, genetic counselling, maternal health and wellbeing, radicalisation, modern slavery, CSE, children in public care, victim support services etc. There was good multi-agency attendance across the courses as detailed below:»» 38% education (mainly primary and secondary but some from higher education)»» 21% social care sector»» 19% Voluntary, Community and Faith (VCF) sector»» 15% health sector»» 7% other services (including criminal justice and family law sectors). Annual Review - Section 6 For larger organisations in the health, criminal justice and family law sectors, extensive higher level in-house safeguarding training and continuing professional development (CPD) events are provided that is most commonly accessed and to which the LSCB provides input. All training is impact assessed and this is reported through the Workforce Development Committee. The Workforce Development Impact Assessment Report for the academic year highlights the following findings: Qualitative feedback from practitioners identifies that following training their confidence and knowledge about safeguarding increased and led to dissemination of their learning within teams, changes in team processes, changes to multi-agency working and confidence when working with families. Just over threequarters of a sample of practitioners contacted about the impact of training reported it had increased their confidence. Where practitioners confidence or knowledge did not increase after attending training, this was attributed mainly to attending the course as refresher training. The most common mentioned policy from practitioners was the Risk Sensible Framework and how the tools from this policy are being used to improve home visits, identification of unmet needs and risk and supporting referrals to other services. A sample of managers were also contacted on the impact the training had for their team members over four-fifths reported their staff members knowledge had increased and over three-quarters reported competences had increased after attending training. Managers regularly cited examples of knowledge in multi-agency processes increasing after their staff had attended training. All managers responding to the impact survey reported they would recommend attending LSCB training to other team members. page 26

29 Training Provision Online Training In partnership with the local authority s Workforce Development Department there have been 14 online safeguarding courses offered in (up from five in ). These include Safeguarding Awareness, Domestic Abuse Awareness, Safeguarding against Radicalisation, Online Safety, Honour Based Abuse/Forced Marriage and Safeguarding Children with Disabilities and more recently Safeguarding Children in Sport. There have been 4,805 online packages completed in over the 14 courses (though a number of these are LSAB courses) compared to 3,512 packages in Practitioner feedback from online training has been very positive: Informative, easy to access and navigate Having undertaken safeguarding courses in other settings, this was an excellent way to refresh my knowledge and understanding Although there was distressing information in this course I feel it is important to be made aware of safeguarding. Annual Review - Section 6 Safeguarding Workbooks The Safeguarding Workbook was refreshed in January 2016 and evaluated in March 2017 this has been used mainly in the voluntary, community and faith sectors. As the feedback was very positive, the books did not require any additional update at this time. Feedback included the following: We have used the information from the workbooks in our volunteer training. The workbook is useful during induction for volunteers / staff it details how to identify a safeguarding concern and how to report it I have used the booklet to produce a power point presentation that I deliver to casual staff on the compulsory training day. It looks better when printed in colour The following feedback from a voluntary sector provider describes the benefit they derive from the LSCB s training packages:...staff and volunteers utilise the fantastic training opportunities available from the LSCB, both physical courses and online e-learning. The e-learning in particular is extremely useful to our team as they can be accessed at a time that suits the learner and worked through at their own pace. The real life case studies and additional reading attached to the modules makes the training relatable and comprehensive. It is user friendly and uses easy to understand terminology which is helpful for our international volunteers who sometimes struggle with our Lancashire accent! page 27

30 Child Death Overview Panel There were 27 child death notifications for the borough in the year. The Child Death Overview Panel (CDOP) reviewed 18 deaths for Blackburn with Darwen in (9 related to deaths in and 9 deaths in ). Reviews relating to one death in and one death from remain to be completed due to ongoing other processes in the two cases. In the period since CDOP has been operational, 173 deaths of children have been reviewed. The CDOP, on reviewing each death, categorises the death using a standard typology and in the tables below the categorisation is presented for the past year and the nine year period since CDOP has been functioning: For the deaths reviewed in : Category 2 Suicide or deliberate self-inflicted harm Under 5 Category 3 Trauma and other external factors Under 5 Category 4 - Malignancy Under 5 Category 5 Acute medical or surgical condition Under 5 Category 6 Chronic medical condition Under 5 Category 7 - Chromosomal, genetic and congenital anomalies 6 Category 8 - Perinatal/neonatal event Under 5 Category 9 - Infection Under 5 Category 10 Sudden unexpected and unexplained death Under 5 Unknown Category Under 5 Total 18 Annual Review - Section 7 For the period, all deaths were categorised as: Category 1 - Deliberately inflicted injury, abuse or neglect Under 5 Category 2 Suicide or deliberate self-inflicted harm Under 5 Category 3 - Trauma and other external factors Under 5 Category 4 - Malignancy 9 Category 5 - Acute medical or surgical condition 6 Category 6 - Chronic medical condition 8 Category 7 - Chromosomal, genetic and congenital anomalies 68 Category 8 - Perinatal/neonatal event 42 Category 9 - Infection 13 Category 10 - Sudden unexpected, unexplained death 16 Unknown Category Under 5 Total 173 page 28

31 Child Death Overview Panel For the period, 22% of Blackburn with Darwen deaths reviewed were found to have modifiable factors compared to 37% Pan-Lancashire and 27% nationally. This significant difference can be attributed to the higher proportion of deaths categorised under chromosomal, genetic and congenital abnormalities and the different ethnic profile of the borough compared to the regional and national averages. Of the deaths reviewed in , 60% of the deaths were for children from non-white ethnic backgrounds (over the last five years this averages to just over 50% and marginally higher than the proportion of school age children from non-white ethnic backgrounds). CDOP Key Successes ( ) The panel undertakes a range of activity to improve the functioning of the panel s work and take forward the learning from the death reviews. Below is a brief summary of the panel s activities in : Safer Sleep Campaign materials continue to be supplied and are now consistent with materials also being supplied in Merseyside and Cheshire. NICE 6 advice on safe sleeping continues to recommend the Pan- Lancashire material as best practice. Annual Review - Section 7 Pan-Lancashire 7-minute briefings and CDOP Newsletters learning from CDOP reviews locally and national issues of concern continue to be circulated through the two publications. CDOP Database a new online software package has been introduced to collate CDOP case review information. Training for agencies on the use of the system continues and it is hoped that in , data analysis can also begin. Review of the Sudden Unexpected Death in Children (SUDC) service the review by Public Health of the service was completed and recommended extending the hours covered by nurse-led service. The Clinical Commissioning Groups in the Pan-Lancashire area have agreed to the additional resources required and the new service is expected to be implemented in Data Analysis analysis by categories of death and themes continues to be commissioned to further understand what service initiatives can be undertaken to prevent future deaths. The CDOP Annual Report ( ) provides additional analysis by deprivation factors and ethnicity factors. Public Health teams across the three LSCB areas continue to undertake additional research and during they have been looking at the link in child deaths with their parents experience of childhood adversity. The final report on the findings is expected in NICE National Institute for Clinical Excellence page 29

32 Examples of Multi-Agency Work and Outcomes Nightsafe - homeless young person A teenager with behavioural difficulties presented to the provider requiring accommodation as his parents could not accommodate him and his identity documents were lost meaning that any benefits or training opportunities could not be accessed. Nightsafe worked with Children s Services, the Department of Work & Pensions, Training 2000, the Foyer supported accommodation service, local authority housing team and the Registrar s office to address his social exclusion, provide accommodation and access training and learning. The teenager was involved in criminality to fund drug misuse and the provider worked with the youth justice service and substance misuse service to stop his offending and drug misuse. Nightsafe worked directly with the teenager to provide transitional support so that a move to supported accommodation was as smooth as possible. Annual Review - Section 8 Nightsafe - young person requiring a safe place to live A teenager self-referred to the service from another town requiring a safe place to live due to modern slavery, honour based abuse and forced marriage risks from his parents and wider family. The teenager was assessed by Children s Services and the police for the various risk factors he was subject to and provided services to immediately protect him from his family. Nightsafe kept the two services informed of disclosures and risk factors as they built a trusting relationship with the teenager. Nightsafe arranged for the teenager to access training and learning, apply for benefits and access services to promote his general wellbeing. Child Action North West - looked after child with autistic traits The foster carers of a child completed a routine strengths and difficulties questionnaire and the results identified that the child may be displaying autistic traits, that had not been reported by the child s parents, or displayed in school or other professional settings. The service s Clinical Psychologist recommended an accredited observation tool to be used by the foster carers to record the child s behaviours. The observations have assisted in referring the child to paediatric services for formal diagnosis. The service provides a child in the centre process to review the child s needs and review whether the foster carer s are receiving appropriate support to manage the child s behavioural difficulties. One such review has led to Children s Services offering respite services to the foster carers. The child s school are also involved in the child in the centre process to assist the child to transition to secondary school. page 30

33 Examples of Multi-Agency Work and Outcomes Early Years - support for a single father Children s Services referred a single father to the service following the father securing residency via an order for his six month old child. The child was subject to a child protection plan with concerns about domestic abuse, mental health, poor housing and lack of routine access to universal health services. The Early Years service provided support within the father s home (basic care and child development advice), in the Children s Centre (accessing local groups to widen the father s knowledge of caring for a child and reducing his social isolation) and making referrals to services recommended by the child s social worker (parenting course and domestic abuse/healthy relationship courses). The father reports that he is now a more confident parent and feels more able to seek help and is knowledgeable about what services provide. Annual Review - Section 8 Midwifery Services pregnant lady suffering trauma The GP referred a patient to the substance misuse midwife following her becoming pregnant. The mother had been misusing alcohol for nearly a decade following the bereavement of her child and had developed related mental health conditions which on many occasions required inpatient care. Since the bereavement, the mother s older child, an adult teenager, had become her main carer. Children s Services, substance misuse services, the adult mental health service and the young carer s service worked together to ensure the protection of the unborn child whilst the mother was pregnant and provide services to the mother and child once the child was born. The teenage adult son has returned to learning with plans to start a new career and has begun to improve his health and wellbeing. The family celebrated Christmas together for the first time in a decade. Police positive partnership arrangements The following are examples from the police s child protection unit of how direct and positive relationships with partners can assist in efficiently investigating child protection concerns: Regular meetings take place with managers in Children s Services to identify innovative practices, make pathways more efficient and improve joint decision making Social workers worked across boundary areas to jointly undertake the visits with police in an investigation requiring over 100 addresses to be visited across different local authority areas Joint training completed to cover processes like responses to child deaths and coronial expectations future joint training is planned on the use of emergency/police protection powers to immediately safeguard children and looked after children regulations Sharing of organisational structures and names/contact details for police and social work teams enabling easier access to relevant officers and social workers in a case involving a three month old with a fracture that was suspected to be non-accidental, the police were able to immediately handover to social workers, assisting the police to commence their investigations and health staff to undertake their medical examinations. page 31

34 Examples of Multi-Agency Work and Outcomes Engage Team - young person being trafficked A young person known to the Engage Team attended an out of borough emergency department where the medical staff suspected that the explanation provided about the injuries she presented with, were not plausible. The hospital staff contacted the out of hours social work team who in turn contacted the Engage Team to alert them of the hospital notification. The information was shared across the partner agencies in the Engage Team and the specialist nurse was tasked with gathering intelligence from the A&E department and other health agencies about the child. The information gathered from the hospital allowed the police and social worker to visit the child s address and arrest her carers who had been trafficking the child for sex. The child was immediately safeguarded and removed from the home. Annual Review - Section 8 MASH Team - female genital mutilation (FGM) The Home Office referred a case to the MASH Team following a disclosure in an asylum application by a mother that her daughter had been sexually abused by her father. The family had already lived in a previous local authority area and the community health records were accessed from that area as part of the screening of the referral. The review of the community health records identified that the mother had reported abuse through FGM when she was a child and that her husband had requested that their daughter is subject to the same abuse. It was unclear in the community health records whether the disclosure had been reported in line with statutory expectations. The specialist nurse, school nurse, police, social care and local authority solicitors worked together to apply for a FGM Protection Order and the community health provider worked across their teams to ensure the health needs of the children in the family were fully addressed. The case was reported in line with statutory expectations. MASH Team - unborn at risk from domestic abuse The police had referred a domestic abuse incident involving a pregnant lady to Children s Services. To screen the referral, the specialist nurse liaised with midwifery services and the GP to gather information. The information gathered from the hospital identified further domestic abuse risks regarding controlling behaviours, that the lady and her perpetrator shared a phone (meaning the lady could not be contacted separately) and GP information identified that the GP was unaware the lady was pregnant. The GP was able to flag the lady s records so that all staff in the practice became aware of the lady s vulnerability and risks to the unborn child. The GP was provided with advice and information on the services that were being recommended for the lady for future monitoring and information sharing. At the next antenatal hospital appointment, a joint visit with the hospital domestic abuse advisor, social worker and midwife took place where advice was provided resulting in the lady and her unborn being safeguarded and additional health services provided to improve the lady s wellbeing. page 32

35 Examples of Multi-Agency Work and Outcomes Children s Partnership Board - creating new services The Head Teacher from a Pupil Referral Unit identified the extent of mental health needs in pupils within their school and approached the Public Health team and local authority education team for advice and support. Discussions led to a decision to trial a whole school approach to improving mental health and wellbeing using services already commissioned by Public Health on mental health first aid that helps practitioners identify/recognise mental health needs and equips them to respond to them at the point of identification. The school s staff were all trained on mental health first aid and parents/carers were also offered briefings to raise their awareness of mental health issues. Within the school there has been a mental health strategy and curriculum developed and services commissioned by the school. The Head Teacher has promoted the approach in other schools locally (including with all local school governors) that has meant Public Health has commissioned additional capacity in their commissioned service for schools. The Head Teacher s promotion also resulted in regional interest in the initiative (resulting in a new priority in Lancashire to support schools to build emotional resilience) and national interest (resulting in the Department of Health commissioning Mental Health First Aid England to co-ordinate an offer to all secondary schools over two years). Annual Review - Section 8 Independent Domestic Abuse Advisor - multiple and complex needs A victim of domestic abuse with five children was accommodated in a refuge from another local authority. The initial risk assessment identified that the victim had been with her partner (not the father of the children) for eight months during which he had physically abused her resulting in losing her front teeth, being strangled and a knife being thrown at her. The victim had been referred to MARAC on three occasions due to the high risks. The home local authority had applied for an interim care order for the children due to the victim s substance misuse as a coping strategy, lack of prioritising the children s needs and poor engagement with services. A condition of the interim care order was to reside in a refuge. The domestic abuse service worked with children s services, children s schools and nursery (including SEND and speech/language services), health services (primary care and community services) and voluntary sector services (emotional health, substance misuse services and parenting course) to address the whole family s unmet needs. The victim and children have accessed nine different services/courses offered by domestic abuse service to understand the abuse they have suffered, promote future resilience/safety, secure housing and increase their social inclusion. The victim has applied for a non-molestation order to increase the family s safety; the children s cases have stepped down from care procedings to a child protection plan and now they are receiving multi-agency services at child in need. page 33

36 Examples of Multi-Agency Work and Outcomes Youth Justice Worker multi-agency co-ordination A young offender who was being released from custody had multiple demands during his licence/ resettlement supervision period due to his unborn child and mother also being provided with services by Children s Services. The multiple services the young offender had to report to as well as becoming a father was causing considerable anxiety for the young person. The Youth Justice Service co-ordinated a timetable with all the services involved to avoid duplicating services, providing joint sessions and allowing the family to address the concerns Children s Services had for the unborn child. The timetable assisted the young person to navigate through the variety services that had to be accessed. The young person is successfully completing his licence requirements and addressing the child protection concerns. Annual Review - Section 8 page 34

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