Managing Allegations against Those Who Work or Volunteer with Children
When should the NYSCP Managing Allegations Procedure be followed?
In all cases where it is alleged that a person who works or volunteers with children has:
- behaved in a way that has harmed a child, or may have harmed a child,
- possibly committed a criminal offence against or related to a child, or
- behaved towards a child or children in a way that indicates he or she may pose a risk of harm to children, or
- behaved or may have behaved in a way that indicates they may not be suitable to work with children.
Allegations can arise from a person’s work or voluntary life, personal or social life. The procedures apply to anyone over 16 years of age.
Where concerns arise about a person’s behaviour towards his/her own children, the police and/or Children’s Social Care (CSC) should consider if they need to inform the person’s employer and/or the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) in order to assess whether there may be implications for children with whom the person has contact at work
If an allegation relating to a child is made about a person who also undertakes paid or unpaid care with vulnerable adults, the NYC Safeguarding Adults’ procedures should also be followed.
The procedures may apply to foster carers and prospective adopters
Initial considerations and contacting the LADO?
If a child has been hurt and needs medical attention, this must be accessed asap.
If there is an immediate risk to a child you need to contact the police via 999 or 101 and the Children & Families Service on 0300 131 2 131 as soon as possible.
As an employer, or manager within an agency, you also need to consider if any immediate safeguards need to be put in place around the individual’s work or voluntary activity e.g. the removal of member of staff and securing evidence.
Any allegation or concern should be reported immediately to the Senior Manager identified in the employer’s internal procedures, unless that person is the subject of the allegation, or where their relationship with the subject could compromise their independence. In these cases the allegation should be reported to the designated alternative within the agency. The responsible manager should then inform the LADO.
Where there is no Senior Manager e.g. a self-employed person, the matter must be reported directly to the LADO.
Where staff want to make an allegation about a person working in another organisation, they should report this to their own Safeguarding Lead without delay, who should in turn inform the LADO.
The LADO must be informed of all allegations that meet the criteria, within one working day. This should take place before any investigations commence.
The role of the LADO is not to investigate allegations; that responsibility lies with the employer / organisation / and or Police. The LADO receives reports about allegations and is involved in the management and oversight of them.
In less serious cases, the police and CSC may not need to be involved. In these cases the LADO will provide an objective view on risk to the organisation and give a view on what action(s) needs to be taken by the organisation to ensure children are safeguarded.
How can I contact the LADO?
If you have considered the allegation and believe the criteria for the managing allegations procedures has been met a referral should be made to the LADO.
You will be asked to complete a referral form however if you wish to speak to someone the contact number is 01609 533080 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to request a call back.
For more detailed information, please see the NYSCP Procedures, which is available here.