1. Understand the policies, procedures and practises for safe working with children and young people
1.1 Explain the policies, procedures and practises for safe working with children and young people
A policy is a statement of what an organisation will do to safeguard a child or young person to keep them safe. A procedure will describe the actions the organisation will take to put the actions into place. A practise is generally written methods outlining who will perform a task with minimum risk.
Every organisation whom supports children and young people in any capacity should have a policy on “child protection” or “safeguarding” which will help in protecting children and young people from harm and abuse. With this should also be a procedure which will enable staff, workers, volunteers and children and young people and their representatives to know what do if they are worried. It will also underpin what is expected of the individual in relation to recognising and reporting concerns.
In England, the law states that children are to be kept safe by the individuals who work with them. This legislation is covered in The Childrens Act 1989 & 2004, the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and the Working Together to Safeguard Children 2013 document by the Department of Health and The Children’s and Young Persons Act 1933.
There is also as part of the five outcomes every child matters, staying safe
Safe from maltreatment, neglect, violence and sexual exploitation
Safe from accidental injury and death
Safe from bullying and discrimination
Safe from crime and anti-social behaviour in and out of school
Have security, stability and are well cared for
In terms of keeping children safe within my service, we asked all visitors to sign themselves and their children into the home, we ask children to stay with their adult representative’s at all times and do not go into bedrooms and stay in the communal areas. All concerns are reported to the manager or senior member of staff, if the manager is unavailable. The service does not allow groups of young children to visit unless prior arrangements have been made, for example,for attendance at a birthday party.
2. Understand how to respond to evidence or concerns that a child or young person has been abused or harmed
2.1 Describe possible signs, symptoms, indicators and behaviours that may cause concern in the context of safeguarding Emotional or psychological abuse: coercion, humiliation, intimidation. Where one person uses emotional or psychological manipulation to compel another to do something they do not want, or is not in their best interests; or when one person manipulates another’s emotional or psychological state for their own ends Emotional abuse can be difficult to observe when it is perpetrated in the privacy of someone else’s home, or in a closed institution. However, personal awareness and understanding of the issue is key to recognising it. The following is a list of possible indicators of emotional abuse:
Low self-esteemSevere anxiety,
Fearfulness,Failure to thrive in infancy,
Sleep disturbances,Physical complaints with no
Inappropriate behaviour for age or development,
Overly passive/compliant,Suicide attempts or discussion,
Inability to trust,Stealing,
Other forms of abuse present or suspected,
Feelings of shame and guilt,Frequent crying,
Self-blame or self-deprecation,
Delay or refusal of medical treatment,
Discomfort or nervousness around career or relative,
Substance abuse,Avoidance of eye contact
Institutional / Organised abuse: is ‘abuse involving one or more abuser and a number of related or non-related young people. The abusers concerned may be acting in concert to abuse children, or may be using an institutional framework or position of authority to recruit children for abuse’. Allegations concerning organised abuse may also relate to historical events involving victims who are now adults. Some organised groups may use bizarre or ritualised behaviour, sometimes associated with particular belief systems.
Neglect is the failure of caregivers to fulfil their responsibilities to provide needed care. Neglect can be hard to recognise as it is often a gradual process, the effects of serious neglect can be very damaging for children. A child suffering from neglect may: Be regularly hungry and steal food from others
Be dressed in unsuitable clothes for the weather; be unkempt, dirty or smelly
Not receive treatment for ill health or injuries.
A child experiencing neglect may:
Be tired all the time
Have few friends and miss a lot of school
Miss hospital and medical appointments
Be left alone at home, sometimes caring for other children
Be found wandering alone and unsupervised
“Active” neglect refers to behaviour that is wilful – that is, the caregiver intentionally withholds care or necessities. The neglect may be motivated by financial gain (e.g. the caregiver stands to inherit) or reflect interpersonal conflicts “Passive” neglect refers to situations in which the caregiver is unable to fulfil his or her care giving responsibilities as a result of illness, disability, stress, ignorance, lack of maturity, or lack of resources.
Self-neglect refers to situations in which there is no perpetrator and neglect is the result of the person refusing care. Self-neglect is often associated with mental health problems, including substance abuse, dementia, and depression.
What are the indicators?
Indicators are signs or clues that neglect has occurred. Indicators of neglect include the condition of the person’s home (environmental indicators), physical signs of poor care, and behavioural characteristics of the caregiver and/or person. Some of the indicators listed below may not signal neglect but rather reflect lifestyle choices, lack of resources, or mental health problems, etc. One should look for patterns or clusters of indicators that suggest a problem.
Signs of neglect observed in the home
Absence of necessities including food, water, heat
Inadequate living environment evidenced by lack of utilities, sufficient space, and ventilation
Animal or insect infestations
Signs of medication mismanagement, including empty or unmarked bottles or outdated prescriptions
Housing is unsafe as a result of disrepair, faulty wiring, inadequate sanitation, substandard cleanliness, or architectural barriers
2.2 Describe the actions to take if a child or young person alleges harm or abuse in line with policies and procedures of own setting All concerns should be reported to the manager, either in person or on the telephone.
The manager will then:
Listen to the child and respect their point of view and offer support
Try to clarify the information without over questioning
Be honest and explain what will happen next and do not promise confidentiality
Ensure the safety of the child
Consult with the adult safeguarding team for clarity and direction
Consult with police or ambulance service if required
Do not do anything which could aggravate the situation
Record all information
Keep any evidence for example, clothing,
2.3 Explain the rights that children, young people and families have in situations where harm or abuse is suspected or alleged
Children, young people and families have the rights to the following in situations where harm or abuse is suspected or alleged:
To be responded to with care and urgency
To be believed
To be supported
To be listened to in a calm and caring environment
For the problem to be dealt with
To be safe
To be given help
To be given opportunity to vent their anger appropriately
To be given medical assistance
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