Advice for staff of Public and Voluntary Organisations
What to do if you suspect a child/young person is being abused
Useful Telephone Numbers
All Public and Voluntary organisations across the Western Bay region are committed to safeguarding the welfare of children and young people, and all staff have the duty to ensure that children and young people are protected from harm.
if you suspect a child is being abused or a child tells you that they are being abused, or you receive information about any adult being involved in the abuse of a child you should follow the following advice:
It is important to remember:
- We all share a responsibility to ensure that children at risk are protected from harm;
- You should never assume that somebody else will recognise and report when children are at risk;
- All those reporting concerns have a right to be assured that these concerns will be fully investigated;
- You should never delay in passing on your concerns to somebody who is in a position to take them forward and ensure that a proper investigation takes place. You will always be taken seriously. Both Police and Social Services have a 24 hour service;
- Do not worry that you may be mistaken. It is better to have discussed it with somebody with the experience and responsibility to make an assessment.
If you are not satisfied with the response you receive, or you believe that the children remain at risk with no apparent action or explanation, follow up your concerns with the person who is dealing with the matter. Where you remain dissatisfied you should contact the person in your organisation with designated responsibility for Child Protection or the Child Protection Co-ordinator at Social Services:
Go to the contacts for complaints by clicking here
If someone tells you that they or another child or young person is being abused:
- Show that you accept what they are saying and that you take their allegations seriously;
- Encourage the child to talk but do not prompt them or ask leading questions;
- Explain what actions you must take;
- Do not give an understanding of absolute confidentiality as staff have a responsibility to disclose information to those who need to know;
- Write down what you have been told using the exact words if possible;
- Report your concerns to the person in your organisation with designated responsibility for Child Protection;
- Check that your concerns are being dealt with and, where appropriate, are being reported to the Duty Social Worker at the local office, or, the Police or the Emergency Duty Social Worker;
- Do not confront the alleged abuser;
- Ensure that your own behaviour does not cause a child distress, or can be misinterpreted.
- If the behaviour of a colleague or member of the public towards children or young people causes you concern:
- Do not dismiss your concerns;
- Do not confront the person about whom you have concerns;
- If you are concerned about the conduct of a colleague in your workplace, you should discuss your concerns with the person in your organisation with designated responsibility for Child Protection and agree what action will be taken next. If you feel uncomfortable doing this, or you are not satisfied with the response that you get, contact the Social Services Child Protection Co-ordinator;
- Referrals should be made by telephone to Social Services or the Police without delay
Important Telephone Numbers:
Neath Port Talbot
Contact numbers and websites
Police: 01792 450658 or 01792 456999
NSPCC: 0800 800 500
NSPCC Child Protection Resources
Children's Commissioner's Office
The Children's Commisioner for Wales speaks on behalf of children and young people, providing them with information about rights and encourages them to have a say on things that affect their lives.
Visit the website: www.childcom.org.uk
Welsh Government Website
Keeping children and young people safe is everybody's business.