Objectives and purpose
The Children Act 2004 places a duty on Local Authorities to establish local boards and sets out the agencies that will be ‘Board partners’ on the LSCB. The Act also places a duty for the authority and Board partners to cooperate with each other.
Further guidance for the LSCB is set out in Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018: A guide to inter-agency working (link opens in new window).
This defines the LSCB as, "the key statutory mechanism for agreeing how the relevant organisations will cooperate to safeguard and promote the welfare of children…and ensuring the effectiveness of what they do."
The LSCB also has a role to contribute to the planning and delivery of children’s services through the Children and Young People’s Plan (CYPP).
- safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children means
- protecting children from maltreatment
- preventing the impairment of children’s heath or development
- ensuring that children are growing up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care
- undertaking that role so as to enable those children to have optimum life chances and enter adulthood successfully
The scope of this role falls into three broad areas of activity:
Activity that affects all children and aims to identify and prevent maltreatment or impairment of health or development, and ensure children are growing up in circumstances consistent with safe and effective care. For example:
- mechanisms to identify abuse and neglect wherever they occur
- work to increase understanding of safeguarding children issues in the professional and wider community, promoting the message that safeguarding is everybody’s responsibility
- work to ensure that organisations working, or in contact with children, operate recruitment and human resource practices that take account of the need to safeguard and promote the welfare of children
- monitoring the effectiveness of organisations’ implementation of their duties under Section 11 of the Children Act 2004 (arrangements to safeguard and promote the welfare of children)
Ensuring children know who they can contact when they have concerns about their own or other’s safety and welfare
Ensuring that adults know who they can contact if they have a concern about a child or young person
Proactive work that aims to target particular groups, for example:
- developing and evaluating thresholds and procedures for work with children and families where a child; has been identified as ‘in need’ under the Children Act 1989, but where the child is not suffering or at risk of suffering significant harm
- work to safeguard and promote the welfare of groups of children who are potentially more vulnerable than the general population, for example, children living away from home, children who have run away from home, children in custody, or disabled children
Responsive work to protect children who are suffering, or at risk of suffering harm, including:
- children abused and neglected within families, including those harmed in the context of domestic violence or as a consequence of substance misuse or mental health issues
- children abused outside families by adults known to them
- children abused and neglected by professional carers, within institutional settings, or anywhere else where children are cared for away from home
- children abused by strangers
- children abused by other young people
- young perpetrators of abuse
- children abused through child sexual exploitation