If you suspect that a child or young person is being harmed or is at risk of being harmed then you have a responsibility to report it immediately. All such calls about children are treated seriously. If it is found that a child is being abused or is at risk of harm, professionals will work together with the family to ensure that the child is protected.
Reporting a concern
If you want to report a concern about a child, contact:
- RCT Contact Centre on 01443 425006 and they will transfer you to someone who can give you relevant information and advice. This number is available Monday - Friday 8.30am - 5.00pm.
To report a concern about a child outside office hours, at weekends and bank holidays, contact:
- The Emergency Duty Team on 01443 743665.
EMERGENCY CONTACT: If you suspect a child or young person is at immediate risk of harm call 999 and speak to the Police. If you would like to report a non-urgent incident however, or have a problem or general query, you can call 101, the 24 hour non-emergency number for the police.
What information do I need to provide?
You will need to explain why you are concerned about the child, giving as much detail as you can. The more information you are able to provide, the easier it will be for Social Services staff to trace any existing records about the child. The child's full name, address and date of birth are the most useful information. If you do not know all of these, other information such as names of parents, brothers or sisters or the school the child attends might help.
You can provide the information anonymously if you wish, though it can be helpful to have your details in case the information given needs to be clarified during the course of enquiries. As a member of the public your identity would be kept confidential to the people investigating your report.
What will happen next?
Enquiries must be made to find out what the facts are and to decide on whether a child is or may be suffering harm either physically or emotionally and anyaction that may need to be taken to safeguard the child. Depending on the nature of the information received, it may be necessary to involve other agencies, such as the Police.
Professionally trained staff may talk to the family about their concerns and hear their views on the matter. They may also see and talk to the child(ren) involved and any other people who may have relevant information.
What if I'm not sure whether to report a concern?
Sometimes enquiries find no significant areas of concern for the child and there is no need for any further action to be taken, however it is better to discuss the concerns you have rather than ignore possible warning signs and therefore endanger a child.
View further information about Safeguarding Children
Remember - safeguarding people is everyone's business!
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