Agenda and minutes

Local Safeguarding Children Board
Friday, 19 May 2017 9.30 am

Venue: Easthampstead House, Town Square, Bracknell, RG12 1AQ

Contact: Lizzie Rich  01344 352253

Items
No. Item

1.

Minutes and Matters Arising including Action Log

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 24 March 2017 were approved as a correct record.

 

The following updates were given with regard to the action log of the last meeting:

  • A response had recently been received from the LA CEO regarding the BF Homes policy for housing high risk offenders and MAPPA cases.
  • Alex Walters agreed to formally raise and escalate CAFCASS representation again, and to request information on the re-organisation of CAFCASS. (Action: Alex Walters)
  • Work to assess arrangements for the transfer from children to adult social services of vulnerable children was being pursued, but it was noted that Adults Social Care had established a new ‘Approaching Adulthood’ team which included two transition social workers to assist young people affected by CSE, disability and other factors. Abigail Simmons was asked to provide further information about this team once the remit was established. (Action: Abigail Simmons)
  • Peter Floyd commented that he had undertaken analysis in two schools of their CSE awareness and training provision. It was hoped that this would be replicated in further schools. Assurance had been gained through this process and discussion with Debbie Smith, Safeguarding and Inclusion Team Manager, and would be enhanced and evidenced by the S.175 process undertaken by schools.
  • Steps had been taken to emphasise the LSCB’s independence from the Local Authority on the LSCB website.

2.

Agency Updates

Minutes:

Rob France informed the LSCB that he would be leaving Bracknell and Wokingham on 19 June 2017 to take up a post at Thames Valley Police Headquarters. Shaun Virtue would be taking on the role of Superintendent for Bracknell and Wokingham Police.

 

Abigail Simmons informed the Board of the merger between Bracknell Forest and Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead’s Safeguarding Adults Partnership Boards. It was commented that the LSCB did not wish to lose the close and local connection between the Boards in Bracknell Forest, and the work on the current Board priority of the transition between children’s and adults services. The Board did not feel that they had been included in consultations before the merger. The Chair of the joint board would be Terry Rich, the current Chair of RBWM’s Adults and Children Safeguarding Boards.

 

Catherine Bates raised concerns regarding the different referral pathways to the LA for Ascot Heath Infant School children living in Bracknell Forest and Windsor and Maidenhead, and her concern that it was more difficult with RBWM. It was agreed that Jonathan Picken and Lorna Hunt would raise this with counterparts in RBWM. (Action: Jonathan Picken/Lorna Hunt)

 

Sarah Bellars reminded the LSCB of the appointment of the new Safeguarding Named Nurse, Jennie Green.

 

Sarah also gave an update on the Strategic Transformation Partnership (STPs) across East Berkshire, Surrey, and Hampshire Local Authorities and CCGs under the Frimley Health geography. The partnership hoped to increase accountability by sharing finances, and to treat the increasing number of patients without additional resources. Six STPs had been established in the first wave across the country. The LSCB asked Sarah for a further update on the work of the STP in July. (Action: Sarah Bellars)

 

Ian Dixon informed the Board of two resignations from the Educational Welfare Service (EWS) in the last month, and of the difficulties in recruiting to these posts. There had not been a historical problem in recruiting, but colleagues in Wokingham and RBWM had reported similar problems in recruitment. The LSCB agreed a watching brief.

 

Ian Boswell reported on the two Partnership Problem Solving Groups under the Community Safety Partnerships – one of which was focussing on police Operation Orchard, tackling anti-social behaviour in the town centre during school holidays.

 

Ian also informed the LSCB of the installation of a ‘mosquito’ device at a private property at The Point, which was intended to deter young people from loitering. This device was not endorsed by the police or Council, and there were concerns around the effect of this device on children. The LSCB supported any challenge of the use of this device.

 

Jonathan Picken commented that he had been impressed by the Thames Valley Police Hate Crime work presented at a recent Prevent Steering Group, and suggested it would be useful to look at in the Board. (Action:  Jonathan Picken to request this report)

 

Lorna Hunt reminded the Board that the Local Authority and LSCB were both undergoing Single Inspection Frameworks (SIF), and that a provisional  ...  view the full minutes text for item 2.

3.

Annual Reports

a.    S11 Sub-Group Update

b.    Training & Professional Development Sub-Group

Minutes:

Pan Berkshire Section 11 Sub-Group

The LSCB received the annual S11 Sub-group report 16/17, and thanked Liz McAuley for the report and for undertaking the chairing of the panel. The Board recognised the positive progress made by the sub-group, and noted the challenge of significant administrative process.

 

The sub-group had been able to increasingly identify  themed learning and opportunities for improvement, and had suggested collaborations between agencies performing well on safeguarding matters, with those requiring additional support..

 

The report highlighted a recent emphasis on Local Authority S11 returns, 5 of the  Berkshire local authorities had been before the panel and that  Slough were scheduled to do so on 20th June 2017.

 

Mid-term reviews for each agency were in development.

 

Training and Professional Development Sub-Group

Following Keith Grainger stepping down from chairing the sub-group, Jonathan Picken was providing this role in the interim. The previous vice-chair, Emma Anderton, had taken a secondment within the Local Authority, so had also needed to step down. The LSCB was asked to consider whether they knew anyone who could fill the chair role for this sub-group, and were reminded of the support and development opportunities available for sub-group chairs.

 

Jonathan commented on the challenge to maintain the momentum on the core training programme while future priorities and training needs were established.

 

The report welcomed the charging policy which  had a demonstrable impact on income in its initial transitional year, Data had demonstrated a drop in numbers following the charging policy, which had since increased and reflected an eventual improvement..

 

Refresher training had been introduced to help to shorten the time spent in training, and the take up of this would be monitored.

 

The LSCB recognised the challenge regarding training, but noted the additional resource available to provide targeted work where necessary on evaluation processes and a further detailed Training Needs Analysis.

4.

Sub-Group Update Reports

a.    Policies and Procedures Sub-Group (Angella Wells)

b.    CCE Sub-Group (Peter Floyd)

Minutes:

The LSCB received the following sub-group 6 monthly update reports:

 

Pan Berkshire Policies and Procedures Sub-group

Angella Wells presented the progress report, and informed the Board that she had taken on the role of Chair for the pan-Berkshire group from Slough LSCB.

 

The group was progressing well with good momentum, and had been well attended. A newsletter had been developed to appraise colleagues in different agencies of the work ongoing.

 

Arising from discussion, the following points were noted:

·         Checks and balances were kept when new policies implemented to ensure they had the desired impact. The Learning and Improvement Subgroup would capture whether policies had been embedded in Bracknell Forest.

·         Dissemination was recognised as a key element to policies and procedures, and it was stressed that all LSCBs needed to encourage their members to remind staff of any changes to existing policies and procedures and any updates.. Updates from the group had been sent to the Board and these would be made available on the website. Details would also be circulated on how to sign up for updates that were made to the CP procedures which everyone was encouraged to circulate to their colleagues. (Action:  Alison Burnell/ All members)

·         The strength of relationship with Tri.x was noted, as this connected the sub-group to national practice.

 

CCE Sub-group

Peter Floyd introduced the Communications and Community Engagement Sub-group 6 monthly progress report.

 

The group had met four times during the year, and Peter commented that he was very pleased with the group’s activity to complement existing safeguarding work undertaken by the LSCB. Progress was evidenced in engaging with the Voluntary, Community and Faith sector and with Parish Councils and Young People.

 

On 10 July 2017, the group was arranging an event for secondary school pupils at Bracknell and Wokingham College to discuss safeguarding issues including mental health, physical health, exploitation (CSE), volunteering and e-safety. There would also be a sixth area where the topic would be flexible and decided by the young people

 

Peter thanked Bracknell and Wokingham College for offering a venue, and Phil Cook for his help with the planning of the event.

 

The LSCB asked the Sub-group to consider how the learning from young people would be best disseminated amongst partners.

5.

Substance Misuse Update and Terms of Reference

Minutes:

Lisa McNally presented the Drug and Alcohol Agency 6 monthly progress report and Terms of Reference for the Drug and Alcohol Action Team, in Jillian Hunt’s absence.

 

The Drug and Alcohol Strategic Group had evolved to provide oversight and governance of the new drug and alcohol service which had been brought in-house to the Local Authority following an unsuccessful tender process. The service would be run in-house for a year, before a review of the process. The LSCB recognised strong links between the service, and parents and young people.

 

In response to questions, the following points were noted:

  • It was hoped that by going in house, a bespoke outreach service could be developed for people who would be reluctant to visit New Hope.
  • The online Breaking Free service was being used successfully, and social media used to promote the key messages of the service.
  • The LSCB queried whether the new service would still have a dedicated young person’s substance misuse worker. Although Lisa confirmed that the capacity to work with young people would not be decreased, it was unclear whether there would remain a dedicated worker for this. (Action: Jillian Hunt / Strategic Group to clarify)
  • Health representatives welcomed the new strategic group as an opportunity to link the Local Authority and CCG work. Drug and alcohol support was currently being commissioned within hospitals in East Berkshire, and it was noted that this was more effective in Frimley Park than at Wexham Park.
  • The group asked for confirmation of the CCG representative on the Durg and Alcohol Strategic Sub-Group. (Action: Jillian Hunt)
  • The gap in provision for non-dependent drinking was recognised.
  • It was requested that in the Background/Context to the report, the phrase ‘can put themselves at risk of harm’ be amended to read ‘can have particular vulnerabilities’ or similar, to move away from potential blame placing.
  • The expansion of alternative therapies was welcomed as it correlated with feedback from young people at recent events who appreciated alternative therapies such as acupuncture.
  • It was recognised that the implementation of the “Family safeguarding” model would increase the number of families being worked with through the Drug and Alcohol team and Children’s Social Care.
  • The LSCB recognised the threat posed to Drug and Alcohol services by the end of the Public Health grant. Partners needed to support public health work if the provision were to continue and would be regularly appraised of the issues/potential impact.

6.

LSCB Business

a.    LSCB Independent Chair’s Report (Alex Walters)

b.    LSCB Safeguarding Business Plan (Jonathan Picken)

c.    Challenge Log (Alex Walters)

d.    LSCB Self Assessment (Alex Walters) – to follow

Minutes:

LSCB Independent Chair’s Report

Alex Walters presented the 6 monthly LSCB Report of the Independent Chair prepared for the CEO and Leader, Lead Member, highlighting the following updates to the Board:

  • CAFCASS attendance
  • Bracknell Forest LSCB Support and Resources
  • Business plan for 2016/17 and 17/18
  • Peer review process
  • Local Authority and number of children subject to child protection plans
  • Child Sexual Exploitation
  • Schools and EHE concerns

It was emphasised that the report reflected the work and challenges of the LSCB and therefore contained no surprises.

 

LSCB Business Plan 2016 – 19

Jonathan Picken presented the 2017-18 update to the LSCB Business Plan for 2016-19, including updates to the LSCB Core Functions and Targeted Priorities for 2017-18. The Business Plan had been previously discussed with the Board at its March meeting and with the sub group chairs at a development event.

Targeted priorities for 17/18 were confirmed as:

 

Early Help

Disabled children

Online Safety

Domestic Abuse

Child Protection arrangements

 

Arising from discussion, it was noted that:

  • An evidence base for the priorities had been included to advise the rationale for their inclusion as targeted priorities.
  • It was requested that the completion dates on the LSCB Core Functions should be tightened to prevent work slipping under the ‘ongoing’ category. (Action: Jonathan Picken)
  • Assurance was requested that young people’s mental health would be captured by the work of the Health and Wellbeing Board, and it was requested that this be referred to in the report (Action: Alex Walters).

 

LSCB Risk/Challenge Log 2017-18

Alex Walters presented the LSCB Risk and Challenge Log 2017-18. The majority of actions were underway, and none were ‘Red’ rated.

 

Arising from discussion, the following points were noted:

  • Julia Powers thanked Alex Walters for raising concerns around housing for MAPPA identified individuals, and commented that this had resulted in an ongoing piece of work to provide for single occupancy.
  • Ian Dixon advised that Alex Walters had met with the pan-Berkshire LSCB Chair to discuss provision for Elective Home Educated (EHE) children, and a Task and Finish group chaired by Ian Dixon had been established to explore the issue across Berkshire. A letter would be sent to the Department for Education to raise concerns around the lack of support and safeguarding provision for children who were EHE. The LSCB thanked Ian for chairing the Task and Finish Group.
  • The LSCB was advised that Bracknell Forest Homes were in the progress of merging with Housing Solutions, the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead housing provider. Nikki Edwards agreed to raise the issue with the Council’s Corporate Management Team to discuss the new governance arrangements of the merged service. (Action: Nikki Edwards)

 

The Effectiveness of the LSCB

Jonathan Picken presented the Effectiveness of the LSCB report, which captured evidence of impact of the LSCB’s work.

 

Child Protection Conference 6 monthly Report

Lisa Tingle, Conference & Review Team Manager, presented the CP Conference Update report, which included a summary of agency attendance commenting particularly on the attendance of Education Professionals over the summer period,  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.

7.

LSCB Performance

a.    Forward Planner of Audits

b.    Audit Recommendations – tracker of progress

Minutes:

The LSCB were appraised and endorsed the proposed LSCB Audits and Surveys 2017-18, and were informed that a ‘facilitated discussion’ was a new approach being adopted to create a more efficient way of problem solving with partner agencies without necessarily undertaking a full multi-agency audit.

8.

Children and Social Work Bill - AILC Briefing

Minutes:

Alex Walters presented the Association of Independent LSCB Chairs briefing on the Children and Social Work Bill which was due to be given royal ascent in May 2017.

 

Following agreement, there would be an almost two year period until April 2019 before new arrangements were required by the Department of Education to be in place. It was expected that the Working Together consultation would come out in November 17. The LSCB was challenged to consider the impact and future of multi-agency safeguarding arrangements following the proposed abolition of Local Safeguarding Children’s Boards. The LSCB raised concerns around the handing of CDOP arrangements and Serious Case Reviews and identified potential risks during the process of transition.

 

Further guidance on the Bill and its changes would be expected  in September 2017, and a further discussion/workshop was proposed at this point.

9.

Other Partnership Board Minutes

Minutes:

The LSCB received the minutes from the following partnership boards:

  • Community Safety Partnership
  • Corporate Parenting Advisory Board
  • Health & Wellbeing Board

 

Arising from the minutes, the following points were raised:

  • CSP – the LSCB commented that from engagement with young people, it had been ascertained that young people felt safer knowing there was CCTV coverage and were concerned at the lack of funding for CCTV in the town centre.
  • CSP – a facilitated discussion had been proposed on County Lines Drug Supply, and Nikki Edwards had requested the same presentation be given to the Council’s Corporate Management Team.
  • CPAP – the pan Berkshire LSCBs had agreed to write collectively to raise concerns around the availability of health assessments for Looked After Children.  In Bracknell Forest health professionals will see those placed within Berkshire and 20 miles of the border but all others are expected to be assessed by the areas in which they live., Whilst this was not recognised as a significant issue in Bracknell Forest it needs to be monitored. There was also the national proposal that health assessments for Looked After Children be extended to include mental health assessments.

10.

Information Items (circulated by email)

·         Training Strategy and Calendar

·         Joint Protocol for Safeguarding Children

Minutes:

The LSCB received the following items as information items electronically:

  • Training Strategy 17/18 and Calendar of events.for 17/18.
  • Joint Partnership Protocol for Safeguarding Children.

11.

Any Other Business

Minutes:

Alex Walters thanked Rob France on behalf of the LSCB for his contribution to the work of  the LSCB, and welcomed Shaun Virtue as the new Chief Superintendent for Bracknell and Wokingham who would also take on the LSCB representation.

12.

Date of Next Meeting

14 July 2017, 9:30am

Minutes:

14 July 2017, 9:30am