How we protect children and young people
A guide for parents and carers
The Local Authority has a duty under the Children Act 1989 to make enquiries about any child where there are concerns for their welfare and safety. If you find yourself part of such an enquiry, this page tells you what to expect. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to ask the Social Worker.
Who are we?
Children's Social Work is a duty team and 3 4-area teams based at the Denton Centre, Acre Street, Denton M34 2BW. The teams are made up of Registered Social Workers and Support Workers. We are part of Communities, Children, Adults, Health.
What are our Statutory duties and responsibilities?
We have a duty under the Children Act 1989 to safeguard and protect children who are suffering or may be suffering from abuse. This may be physical, sexual, emotional or as a result of neglect.
When do we carry out a Section 47 enquiry?
We receive information about possible concerns for a child from a range of sources. These include schools, health visitors, the hospital, the police, neighbours, family, the general public or from children themselves. Occasionally we will receive information anonymously.
The Local Authority has a duty to investigate when we receive any information that concerns the safety of a child. We may visit parents or carers at home. It is usual for either two Social Workers or a Social Worker and a Family Intervention Worker to carry out an enquiry. Sometimes a Social Worker will visit accompanied by a Police Officer from the Public Protection Investigation Unit (PPIU). The child should always be alone as part of this enquiry.
What are the aims of the enquiry?
The Social Worker will need to gather information from the child or children concerned. They will also need to talk with parents, carers and other significant people in the child’s life. This all helps to establish whether or not the child has been or is likely to be harmed.
What happens next?
- If a child has suffered an injury it is possible that a medical examination is the best way to establish the cause. This is always undertaken by a safeguarding paediatrician (a doctor who specialises in children’s health) at a hospital or a clinic.
- The police may become involved if there is the possibility that a criminal offence has occurred. We have a legal duty to inform the Police of any incident where a criminal act may have taken place.
- If the child has been or may be harmed, we may convene a Child Protection Conference. This is a meeting with you to agree what needs to be done to prevent future harm to your child. Other professionals will be invited to this meeting. You can bring someone to support you to this meeting.
- We may also be involved in supporting a criminal prosecution.
- We may have to consider obtaining parental responsibility for the child from the Courts. This enables us to make arrangements for the day to day care for your child, possibly away from the family home or with other family members.
- Where harm has occurred to one child in a family, action to protect children within the family will also be considered.
The actions and decisions taken will depend on our assessment of the situation and the commitment and capacity of the parents/carers to promote the welfare and meet the needs of the child. You will receive a copy of our assessment.
There will always be a discussion with police, health and education to consider how best to proceed with the enquiry.
We can consider a wide range of responses to protect children. Our priority is to offer support and help to keep a family together. However, this may not always be possible.
In some circumstances there may be no further action following our enquiries. The Social Worker will keep the family informed of what is happening.
Do we share information?
Sometimes it is necessary to share personal information with other organisations to allow us to work together to provide the best service for you and your children.
We follow strict rules about confidentiality. These tell us what personal information we can collect and how and when we can share this information with other organisations.
How can you contact the appropriate Children's Social Work Team?
Either you or someone else on your behalf can contact:
Children’s Denton Centre, Acre Street, Denton M34 2BW
0161 342 4477 Send a Message
Looked After Children’s Social Work Team, Acre Street, Denton M34 2BW
0161 342 4202/4128/4082/4037 Send a Message
What if you have further questions?
We hope that this information will answer a lot of your queries. If you would like to know anything else about the process, please do not hesitate to contact the Social Worker. They will have left you with contact details.
How to make a complaint, comment or compliment
Children's Social Care is committed to providing quality services. We need to hear from you if you have any complaints, suggestions or compliments about the service you receive.