Why are people concerned about my safety?
This is a natural question to ask. This page will help you understand what this means and what will happen if someone is concerned about your safety.
In Calderdale, there are a lot of services who are working to support children and families to help prevent the family from experiencing serious difficulties and to prevent the child or young person coming to harm. This is known as ‘Early Intervention’. For this support to be successful, parents/carers need to agree to work alongside professionals.
When it is thought the safety of children and young people is at risk, other services may need to become involved. Try and keep in mind:
- The law states that Social Services (also called Children’s Services) must look into information given to them about the safety of a child or if there are concerns that they are not being looked after properly
- Your safety is the most important matter even if it may be upsetting for your parents or carers. You have a right to be safe, protected from harm and looked after properly.
- Professionals such as Teachers, Doctors and Health Workers have a responsibility to contact Social Care if they have concerns about the safety of a child.
Can I be involved?
Yes – it is important that you tell us what you feel and what you would like to happen.
- You will be told what the concerns for your safety are.
- Your opinions and views will be listened to in a way that is as comfortable as possible for you. You may have an adult friend, interpreter, advocate with you.
- You will be told your Rights.
- You will be treated with respect.
- Information about you and your family will be kept confidential and will not be passed on to others, unless it is essential for your safety
Everyone recognises that bringing up children can be challenging at times. All agencies who work with children and families will want to work with you and your family to offer help and support.
What happens in an enquiry?
You will be appointed a Social Worker who will want to talk to a number of people to find out if you are being cared for safely. They will want to talk to:
- You – Your views about what is happening and what you would like to happen are really important. Talk to the Social Worker about ways you can make sure everyone involved knows what you want to happen
- Your parents/carers – The Social Worker will tell them the reasons for the concerns about you and your family
- Other members of the family you may like to suggest to the Social Worker who is an important person in your life.
- Your Health Worker, Teacher, Doctor, Connexions Advisor and other professionals who work with you.
Will the police be involved?
A Police Officer may have to be involved and will probably visit with the Social Worker. They will explain if you need to have a special interview and how this is arranged. They will usually not be in uniform and are specially trained in working with Children and Young People.
Remember that you should ALWAYS ask to see identification of any worker who comes to see you.
What will happen after the enquiries?
In many cases enquiries show that they are no grounds for concern. If this is the case you will be told as soon as possible, generally by the Social Worker who first visited you.
The Social Worker may talk to you and your family about what additional support you would like.
What happens if the enquiries show that it is something more serious?
A meeting called a Child Protection Conference will be held. When you are invited to a Child Protection Conference you will be told by the Social Worker who else is to be invited and why: The page Child Protection Conferences and Plans will explain the purpose of the conference and what happens next.
An enquiry into your safety maybe upsetting and stressful. To help with this, please try and keep the following in mind:
- Everyone involved will try to do their best for you and your family
- It can be helpful to talk to someone you trust who you know is sensible and will not talk to others about your business.
- If you are unhappy about any part of the enquiry, you should first speak with the Social Worker
- If you have a complaint about them, Contact Us