Safeguarding children
Produced in partnership with Joy Hopkinson of London Borough of Lambeth Council
Safeguarding children

The following Local Government practice note produced in partnership with Joy Hopkinson of London Borough of Lambeth Council provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Safeguarding children
  • Local authorities
  • The Children Act 1989
  • The Children Act 2004
  • The Children and Social Work Act 2017
  • Safeguarding partners
  • Child safeguarding practice reviews
  • Child death reviews

This Practice Note sets out the statutory duties to safeguard children. It covers local authorities' (LAs) duties to children in their area, interagency working between safeguarding partners. It also covers child safeguarding practice reviews and child death reviews.

The government guidance for ‘Working together to safeguard children: A guide to interagency working to safeguard and promote the welfare of children, July 2018’ defines safeguarding children and promoting the welfare of children as:

  1. ‘protecting children from maltreatment

  2. preventing impairment of children’s health or development

  3. ensuring that children grow up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care

  4. taking action to enable all children to have the best outcomes’

Legislation and statutory guidance emphasise the need for multi-agency working. The responsibility for keeping children safe extends beyond the LA to all organisations involved with children and families.

Local authorities

LAs and their social workers (SWs) have specific roles and responsibilities in safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children.

Section 10(1) of the Children Act 2004 (CA 2004) specifically requires each LA to make arrangements with relevant partners and other organisations working with children in their area, to promote the welfare of children in that area. This includes identifying children and families who need early help and identifying universal and targeted services to provide that assistance.

CA 2004, s 10(2) defines well-being of children as relating to their physical and

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