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CASPAR weekly update

Keeping you up-to-date with the latest child protection and safeguarding news. CASPAR news update
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CASPAR: current awareness service for practice, policy and research

Welcome to the latest CASPAR alert from NSPCC Knowledge and Information Service for week commencing Monday 04 December 2017

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NSPCC online course: managing sexualised behaviour in primary schools

The NSPCC has launched a new online training course to help teachers and school staff identify and respond appropriately to instances of sexualised behaviour. It includes practical information and advice on how to recognise, respond to and report cases of unhealthy sexualised behaviour to help prevent children coming to harm. Save 20% with discount code CasparMSB. (Enter code at checkout. Offer ends 20 December 2017).

Source: NSPCC online course: managing sexualised behaviour in primary schools.


Writing surveys for social care research

The NSPCC’s Impact and evidence series features a blog by Eleni Romanou, Evaluation Officer at the NSPCC on how to write surveys for social care research.

Source: NSPCC  Date: 04 December 2017


Sex offences by adults in position of trust

The NSPCC has published figures which show that sex offences committed by adults in positions of trust, including teachers, care staff and youth justice workers rose to 290 in the year to June 2017; an increase of 82% since 2014. The NSPCC’s #TrustToLead campaign is urging the Government to extend the position of trust law to cover all adults working regularly with children, including religious leaders, adults working in the arts, outdoor pursuits and other activities.

Source: NSPCC   Date: 29 November 2017

Further information:  Trust to lead campaign


Drug use

Voice Box, Childline’s weekly video chat, features Tariq from the charity Addaction talking about what drugs are, why some people take them, and the effect they can have on you.

Source: YouTube  Date: 29 November 2017

Further information: Childline

Addaction 


Child sexual exploitation service development

The University of Bedfordshire has published an evaluation of the Alexi Project ‘hub and spoke’ programme of child sexual exploitation (CSE) service development. The project involved 16 CSE services which were funded with the aims of: making specialist support available to children and young people in new locations; and improving the co-ordination, delivery and practice of local services responding to CSE. The project used a hub and spoke model which involved a voluntary sector organisation (the ‘hub’) placing experienced CSE workers (‘spokes’) in new areas, in order to extend coverage and reach. Recommendations based on interviews with 276 stakeholders include: commissioners should utilise voluntary sector knowledge and expertise to identify and respond to CSE, and to support the development of good safeguarding practice; and statutory services should partner with voluntary workers to engage children and young people in statutory services and processes.

Source: University of Bedfordshire  Date: 29 November 2017

Further information: Evaluation of the Alexi Project ‘hub and spoke’ programme of CSE service development: final report (PDF)


Court case

The Court of Appeal has overturned the non–custodial sentence given to Nicholas Henshall who was found guilty of sexual assault on a child. The original sentence has been quashed, and replaced with a sentence of 20 months imprisonment, and a 10 year Sexual Harm Prevention Order.

Source: Attorney General’s Office  Date: 29 November 2017


The National referral mechanism

ECPAT has published a report looking at professionals’ attitudes towards the National referral mechanism (NRM), the UK framework for identifying victims of human trafficking or modern slavery, specifically in regard to children’s cases. Findings from 229 responses to a survey of practitioners working with children who may have been trafficked found that: only 6% of respondents felt that there was good awareness of the NRM among frontline professionals; and 54% of respondents believed that the current NRM process needed to be revised.

Source: ECPAT  Date: 30 November 2017

Further information: Time to transform: results of a survey of frontline professionals on the National referral mechanism for child victims of trafficking and modern slavery


Asylum-seeking children joining family in England

Coram Children’s Legal Centre (CCLC) has published a factsheet providing information for professionals working with children who have joined their family member(s) in England under the Dublin Regulation.

Source: CCLC  Date: 30 November 2017

Further information: Supporting asylum-seeking children joining their family under the Dublin Regulation (PDF)


Call for suicide prevention plan for child victims of 'sextortion'

The Guardian reports that Barnardo’s Scotland has called for suicide prevention plans to be automatically put in place for young victims of ‘sextortion’, where criminals lure individuals into sending them sexually explicit images and then threaten to share them online unless they get payment.

Source: Guardian  Date: 29 November 2017


Restraint and restrictive intervention: consultation

The Department of Health (DOH) is consulting on draft guidance on reducing the need for restraint and restrictive intervention for children and young people with learning disabilities, autistic spectrum disorder and mental health needs. The consultation closes on 28 January 2018.

Source: DOH  Date: 29 November 2017

Further information: Reducing the need for restraint and restrictive intervention: draft guidance (PDF)


Criminal injuries compensation for victims of child abuse

The House of Commons Library has published a research briefing explaining the background to the Criminal injuries compensation scheme to compensate people who have been physically or mentally injured because they were the blameless victim of violent crime in England, Scotland and Wales. The briefing looks at issues concerning the scheme which can affect victims of child abuse including: reducing or withholding awards because of victims’ criminal convictions, and consent to sexual activity.

Source: House of Commons  Date: 28 November 2017 

Further information: Criminal injuries compensation for victims of child abuse (PDF)


Online safety

The Children’s Commissioner for England and Tes have produced simplified terms and conditions for Instagram, WhatsApp, YouTube, Snapchat and Facebook to help parents and carers support their children to manage their rights and privacy online. 

Source: Children’s Commissioner for England  Date: 28 November

Further information: Young peoples’ rights on social media (PDF)


Ofsted children’s services inspection

Ofsted has published the framework and guidance for inspecting local authority services for children in need of help and protection, children in care and care leavers to be used from 2018. An article in Community Care outlines what social workers need to know about changes being made to social care inspection.

Source: Ofsted  Date: 29 November 2017

Further information: Framework, evaluation criteria and inspector guidance for the inspections of local authority children’s services (PDF)

What social workers need to know about Ofsted’s new inspection regime


Growing up in kinship care

Grandparent’s Plus has published a report on the experiences and outcomes for young people growing up in kinship care, compared with the progress of care leavers and their peers in the general population. Findings from interviews with 53 young people aged 16-26 who had lived in kinship care for at least two years and 43 kinship carers include: outcomes for young people in kinship care were generally better than those for young people in other types of care, but not as good as in the general population; and many carers did not feel well supported at the point that they took on their caring role.

Source: Grandparents Plus  Date: 30 November 2017

Further information: Growing up in kinship care: experiences as adolescents and outcomes in young adulthood - executive summary (PDF)


Children and young people’s media use

Ofcom has published a report on children’s and parents’ use of and attitudes to media. Findings include: 17% of children aged 8-11 and 29% of children aged 12-15 who go online say they have ever seen something online that they found worrying or nasty.

Source: Ofcom  Date: 29 November 2017

Further information: Children and parents: media use and attitudes report (PDF)


Online mental health support for young people

The Education Policy Institute (EPI) has published a report on the effectiveness of online counselling for children and young people, based on data from the Kooth online counselling and emotional wellbeing service. Kooth is delivered free at the point of use for young people living in more than 70 Clinical Commissioning Group areas where the service is commissioned. Findings include: the main reasons young people chose online counselling were anonymity and the convenience of being able to access the service from their own home and out of hours.

Source: Education Policy Institute  Date: 28 November 2017

Further information: Online mental health support for young people - EPI report (YouTube summary)


Support for survivors of child sexual abuse

Children & Young People Now features a blog by Des Mannion, National Head of Service for NSPCC Cymru, explaining why it’s never too late to report child sexual abuse (CSA). Highlights the support available to both adult and child survivors of CSA, including the NSPCC’s Letting the Future In programme and the National Association of People Abused in Childhood (NAPAC).

Source: Children & Young People Now  Date: 24 November 2017

Further information: NSPCC

National Association of People Abused in Childhood (NAPAC)


Children’s services spending and delivery in England

The Department for Education (DfE) has published an updated report on children’s services spending and delivery in England between 2010/11 and 2015/16. Findings include: between 2010/11 and 2015/16 total spending by local councils on children’s services decreased by 9%; average spend per child in need increased by 10%; average spend per looked after child decreased by 2%. However the actual spend per head varied according to local authority.

Source: DfE  Date: 28 November 2017

Further information: Children’s services: spending, 2010-11 to 2015-16 (PDF)


Child mental health

Spurgeons Children’s Charity has released findings from Freedom of Information (FOI) requests made to NHS Trusts in England which have either child and adolescent mental health Services (CAMHS), or A&E departments. Data from 32 NHS Trusts showed around 60% of under 18s who are referred to CAMHS by their GP are not receiving treatment. Figures from 59 A&E departments in England show that under 18s admitted to A&E for self-harm has increased by 50% in the period 2010-2016, but outpatient treatment rates are going down.

Source: Spurgeons Children’s Charity  Date: 28 November 2017

Further information: Guardian


County lines – criminal exploitation of children and vulnerable people

The National Crime Agency (NCA) has published an update on county lines, the drug dealing model which involves networks from urban centres expanding their drug dealing activities into smaller towns and rural areas, often exploiting young or vulnerable people. Findings from a survey of police forces in England and Wales, Scotland and the Metropolitan Police include: 65% of forces reported that county lines activity was linked to the exploitation of children; and 26% of forces reported evidence of child sexual exploitation. The NCA estimates that there are at least 720 county lines across England and Wales, the majority of which will involve the exploitation of multiple young or otherwise vulnerable people.

Source: NCA  Date: 28 November 2017

Further information: County lines violence, exploitation and drug supply: national briefing report 


Responding to female genital mutilation (FGM): multi-agency guidance - Scotland

The Scottish Government has published guidance providing a framework within which agencies and practitioners can develop and agree processes for working collaboratively and individually to promote the safety and wellbeing of women and girls at risk of female genital mutilation (FGM). The guidance aims to help with: identifying whether a girl or young woman may be at risk of FGM; identifying whether a girl or woman has undergone FGM; protecting those at risk and responding appropriately to those already affected; and working to prevent and end FGM.

Source: Scottish Government Date: 27 November 2017

Further information: Responding to female genital mutilation in Scotland: multi-agency guidance (PDF)


Child abuse and child protection: social attitude survey

The Department for Education (DfE) has published a research report looking at public attitudes to education and children’s services, including child abuse and child protection, across England, Scotland and Wales. Findings from 2,942 participants who were interviewed face-to-face at home, with 2,400 participants completing a further self-completion questionnaire include: 24%of respondents thought it would be very or fairly easy to identity whether a ten-year-old child was suffering abuse or neglect; and 71% felt very or quite confident in knowing what to do if they were certain a neighbour had a child who was being seriously abused or neglected - the proportion saying ‘very confident’ has increased from 28% in 2006, to 33% in 2016.

Source: DfE Date: 27 November 2017

Further information: Attitudes to education and children’s services: the British social attitudes survey 2016: research brief (PDF)


Engaging children and young people in developing children’s services

The Scottish Government has published a report describing the process for developing a model for enabling children to take part in and influence how adults plan and run services for them in their area. The model was developed by Edinburgh Children’s Partnership as part of a pilot initiative to devise a methodology for engagement that is jointly owned by children, young people and professionals which could then be shared as good practice with other community planning partnership areas.

Source: Scottish Government Date: 27 November 2017

Further information: A model of engagement with children, young people and planners in the development of children’s services plans (PDF)


Delivery plan for Scotland’s strategy to prevent violence against women and girls

The Scottish Government has published a delivery plan for Equally Safe, Scotland’s strategy to prevent violence against women and girls. It includes a range of actions under four priority areas: ensuring that Scottish society embraces equality and mutual respect, and rejects violence; that women and girls thrive as equal citizens; that interventions are early, effective and maximise the safety of women, children and young people; and that men desist from violence and perpetrators receive a robust and effective response. It contains an outcomes framework with indicators to demonstrate progress nationally and locally.

Source: Scottish Government Date: 24 November 2017

Further information: Equally safe: a delivery plan for Scotland’s strategy to prevent and eradicate violence against women and girls (PDF)


Children and young people's mental health: improving care, treatment and support

This conference, organised by Open Forum Events, takes place on 12 December 2017 in Manchester.

Source: Open Forum Events



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