CSW Act and Review of LSCBs

CHANGES and IMPACTS of the CHILDREN and SOCIAL WORK ACT 2017

In order to support members and inform our wider work with stakeholders, during 2017-2019, we will be collecting, collating and sharing local experiences and examples of how LSCBs are tackling the important changes required by the Children and Social Work Act. We intend to do this in the following ways:

  • Promoting the sharing of experience, and examples
  • Regularly offering members the opportunity to update and share
  • Looking at some of the key learning, challenges and issues so that these can feed into and inform the wider dialogue
  • Actively looking for partners to support a wider research based approach
As a result of our first survey of members in May, and subsequent follow up, we are grateful for some of the “stories” and examples from the small number of LSCBs and Chairs who have started to explore new options. These are outlined in our ‘Early Adopters’ section.

AILC’s survey in May also told us, that for many LSCBs, thinking and discussion was still at an early stage, understandably not least as the consultation regarding the future shape and content of a revised ‘Working Together’ has yet to start. We are also ensuring sure that news of developments, regarding the discussions taking place for CDOP and SCR’s, is being shared via the website and newsletters.

Our second survey, 6 months later in November 2017 showed only a little change with; a similar one third of LSCBs keeping the same structure, and the same almost a third being "somewhat pessimistic" about the changes; most respondents asking for the sharing of findings on local developments to help them.
 
Our third survey undertaken in September 2018 is reporting at conference and will show an increase in the percentage of respondents keeping the same structure, more optimism and the vast majority asking for the national sharing of local developments.

As always we seek to tread a careful line in sharing information and experience without forming judgement. We also have to take this experience and enable it to shape and inform our wider discussions and interventions as an Association, reflecting where possible an evidence and objectively based view of the different positions people and partnerships have.

We hope you will find this information helpful and we rely on you to share and be actively involved, as we add to the picture and chart developments.

This Changes and Impacts section has a number of sub-sections for you to access;

  • ‘Early Adopters’ of changes – information provided by LSCBs who are making changes from 2017
  • AILC's engagement with the CSW Act - including submissions, summaries and briefing reports (information for members only by sign in)

The Government commissioned a fundamental review of LSCBs, Serious Case Reviews and CDOP arrangements which was undertaken by Alan Wood and reported in March 2016. The Association, together with many individual chairs and boards, made representations to the Review and also consulted widely, gathering evidence, surveying members views and setting out clear recommendations for effective multi-agency safeguarding arrangements.  The Association has been able to collate considerable evidence of what is working well in local areas, as well as identify where improvement and change may be required.  The Association’s submission to the Review is available below.

A general response to the Review from the Government was published in May 2016, and a number of the recommendations from the Review have been incorporated into the Children and Social Work Bill which is currently under consideration in Parliament. Our news page will carry up-to-date information about the content of the bill, the process for revising Working Together and other guidance and regulations, and the implementation of new arrangements when these are finalised. It is clear that there will be an extended period until 2018 of transition and implementation of whatever new framework is agreed by Parliament, and LSCBs must continue to undertake their work to co-ordinate, ensure co-operation and to challenge and scrutinise the safeguarding performance of all partners.

In January, March, June and September 2016 the Association convened a series of roundtable meetings with invited representatives from all parts of the safeguarding community, including ADCS, SOLACE, LGA, the Royal Colleges, Public Health, NHS England, Police and Police and Crime Commissioners, and the inspectorates. The Department for Education and Alan Wood also attended these sessions.These have been extremely useful in exploring the risks and opportunities involved in reforming safeguarding arrangements. The Department for Education is now starting its own process of discussion with stakeholders to which the Association is committed.

The Association Board has agreed as set of key proposition to serve as a framework for national and local responses to these changes. The Annual Conference in November 2017 debated these issues and set out a clear strategy for both leading and adapting to these changes at local, regional and national levels.

CSW Act Links & Documents

AILC Presentation to the Westminster Forum on the Impacts of the
CSW Act - 25 April 2018

Click below to access presentation.

Secretary of State Response - 11th March

AILC received a response to our letter of 18th January. It stated "We look forward to working with our stakeholders, including AILC, to deliver comprehensive and effective implementation of the new safeguarding arrangements" The full letter can be downloaded below.

AILC's Letter to Secretary of State, Damian Hinds - 26th January

AILC wrote to the Secretary of State regarding the 703 responses to 'Working Together'. The letter highlighted that we remain concerned that "the new legislative framework and permissive guidance will not deliver the improvements in multi-agency working that are intended...the prospect of disjointed, inconsistent interpretation and implementation of the over-permissive guidance is a real and tangible risk to the effectiveness of safeguarding children. We are seeking your personal reassurance that your Department will give thorough consideration to the concerns raised and allow adequate time for a considered and thorough response to the points made". The letter is attached below. 

Child Death Review & Working Together Consultation 2017-18

The consultation on Working Together and the Child Death Review Statutory Guidance was open between October and December 2017 and has now closed.
 
The survey and related DfE documents are:

1. Working Together draft guidance published 2017 and related documents
 
2. February 2018 Dfe Response to submissions to Working Together guidance, entitled' Changes to statutory guidance: Working Together to Safeguard Children; and new regulations - Government consultation response' 
  
We will update this page with more information as it is made available and do contact policy@lscbchairs.org.uk for more information.

DfE Briefing

First message about the safeguarding reform arrangements from the government departments with policy responsibility for the three safeguarding partners (and their representative bodies).’ July 2017. Upload below.

The Children and Social Work Act has now received Assent

 Update - May 2017

On April 27th, just before the election was called, the Children and Social Work Act received the Royal Assent.   You can find a copy of the new Act here.  As well as provision for new local safeguarding arrangements, replacing SCRs and reforming CDOP, the Act contains important proposals on social work regulation, care leavers, the statutory inclusion of PHSE in schools and other clauses.
 
Here is the implementation timescale as we currently understand it:

Draft orders and regulations will be prepared for the minister after the election, and the revised guidance for 'Working Together' (plus anything else if it does not all come as one document) is being prepared in the summer and will be out for 12 week consultation in the autumn. This was expected to be September but is now probably going to be a little later due to the election. The expectation is that local plans will be drawn up and agreed for implementation by no later than April 2019, but that some areas may propose and have agreed new arrangements ahead of this. Further updates will be provided regularly by AILC.
 
The latest version of AILC's Briefing on Local Safeguarding Children Arrangements can be found on the Private Member's Government Review Page as well as a presentation on Future Safeguarding Arrangements, completed by AILC's Chair,  David Ashcroft.

AILC Submission to Parliament

AILC submitted its comments on the Children & Social Work Bill on the 4th January 2017. 

To see a copy of the Submission, please click below.
Track the progress of the Children & Social Work Bill 2016-17
Progress of the Bill
AILC Survey Report Re Government's Review of LSCBs
Includes statistical findings from questions about safeguarding structures, together with comments from Chairs and LSCBs about what makes LSCBs successful. Download below.
News Article on the Prime Minister's Review of LSCBs published in the Guardian on 22 February 2016. 
Government's Review of Child Protection must not weaken servcies - Written by Maggie Blyth and David N Jones.