Safeguarding Children statement
Ling House Medical Centre aims to safeguard all children and young people who may be at risk of abuse, irrespective of disability, race, religion/belief, colour, language, birth, nationality, ethnic or national origin, gender or sexual orientation. Approaches to safeguarding children must be child centred, upholding the welfare of the child as paramount (Children Acts 1989 and 2004).
The Practice adopts a zero-tolerance approach to child abuse and neglect.
The Practice safeguarding children policy outlines how the Practice will fulfil its statutory responsibilities and ensure that there are in place robust structures, systems and quality standards for safeguarding children, and for promoting the health and welfare of Looked After Children which are in line with the multi-agency safeguarding children partnerships of The Bradford Partnership.
Ling House Medical Centre has clearly identified lines of accountability within the practice to promote the work of safeguarding children within the practice.
Practice staff must be competent to be alert to potential indicators of abuse and neglect in children, know how to act on their concerns and fulfil their responsibilities in line with safeguarding procedures of The Bradford Safeguarding Partnership and the ‘Safeguarding Children and Young People Competencies for Health Care Staff Intercollegiate Document’ (RCN, 2019).
Keeping children and young people safe from harm requires professionals and others to share information about their health and development and exposure to possible harm. Often, it is only when information from a number of sources has been shared and pulled together that it becomes clear that there are concerns a child is in need of protection or services.
It is important to keep a balance between the need to maintain confidentiality and the need to share information to protect others. Decisions to share information must always be based on professional judgement about the safety and wellbeing of the individual and in accordance with legal, ethical and professional obligations.
Practice staff follow HM Government information sharing advice for practitioners providing safeguarding services to children, young people, parents and carers (July 2018).
The Disclosure and Barring service (DBS) enables organisations in the public, private and voluntary sectors to make safer recruitment decisions by identifying candidates who may be unsuitable for certain work, especially that involving children or vulnerable adults, and provides wider access to criminal record information through its disclosure service for England and Wales.
The Practice recruitment process recognises that it has a responsibility to ensure that it undertakes appropriate criminal record checks on applicants for any position within the practice that qualifies for either an enhanced or standard level check. Any requirement for a check and eligibility for the level of check is dependent on the roles and responsibilities of the job.
PREVENT is one strand of CONTEST, the Government’s Counter Terrorism Strategy. PREVENT focuses on preventing people becoming involved in terrorism, supporting extreme violence or becoming susceptible to radicalisation. Alongside other agencies, such as education services, local authorities and the police, healthcare services have been identified as a key strategic partner in supporting this strategy.
Healthcare professionals may meet and treat children and young people who are vulnerable to radicalisation, because they may have a heightened susceptibility to being influenced by others.
The key challenge for the health sector is to be vigilant for signs that someone has been or is being drawn into terrorism. GP's and their staff are the first point of contact for most people and are in a prime position to safeguard those people they feel may be at risk of radicalisation.
What to do if you have concern that a child is being harmed as a result of abuse or neglect:
In the Bradford district, these are the numbers that you can ring for advice and to make a referral:
- During office hours (8.30am – 5.00pm Monday to Thursday, 4.30pm on Friday) call Children’s Social Services Initial Contact Point on 01274 437500
- At all other times, Social Services Emergency Duty Team on 01274 431010
- If you have reason to believe that a child is at IMMEDIATE RISK OF HARM, contact the police on 999