A report from the Executive Director – People is attached. (Non key)
(7.20 – 7.30 pm)
Councillor Achilleas Georgiou (Cabinet Member for Children’s Services) introduced the report of the Executive Director – People (No.120) presenting the Enfield Safeguarding Children Board annual report 2017/18.
Geraldine Gavin, Independent Chair of the 2017/18 Enfield Safeguarding Children Board, was welcomed to the Cabinet meeting and invited to present the Annual report to the Members. Geraldine highlighted some issues including the following:
· This was the final Annual Report of the current Safeguarding Children arrangements.
· The Children and Social Work Act 2017 had introduced new arrangements with effect from June 2019, when the Metropolitan Police, Enfield Clinical Commissioning Health Group and Enfield Local Authority, would all jointly share the responsibility for protecting children and young people across the Borough.
· Planning for the new arrangements was continuing to take place, building on existing strengths and partnership working.
· The challenges going forward were outlined, and priorities for the future noted.
· The value of having lay members on the Board and the strengths that they brought to the work were acknowledged. Geraldine expressed her thanks and appreciation to the lay members who had previously served the Board, and a new member had been welcomed.
· A successful multi-agency event had taken place that day. Enfield had been outstanding in its attendance and demonstration of partnership working in the Borough.
Councillor Nesil Caliskan (Leader of the Council) thanked Geraldine Gavin for her informative presentation and welcomed her comments with regard to the value of lay members and their continued integral role in the new arrangements.
Councillor Georgiou expressed his thanks to Geraldine Gavin, as Independent Chair, for the good and valuable work of the Board. The following points were noted in further discussion:
1. Enfield was in a good position to move forward with the new arrangements required by legislation, as outlined in the Annual report. The existing strengths would be taken forward and built upon through partnership working with all of the authorities involved. This was an opportunity to develop further and move forward for the benefit of children and young people in the Borough.
2. In response to questions raised, it was noted that some of the recorded figures had risen from the previous year. Members were advised that this was due to a growing awareness and exposure of issues. The work being undertaken was rigorous and included preventative work.
3. The preventative work that was carried out in schools, including the use of drama, which had proved to be very effective. Members were pleased to note that the Enfield Strategic Partnership had agreed to allocate funding for this work to continue in the forthcoming year.
4. The work being undertaken by the “Early Help” intervention services, as set out in the Annual Report, and the numbers of families involved. In response to questions raised, Members were advised of the services provided; and, the alternative processes available when families did not want to engage with early help support services, dependent on the level of need.
5. The priorities and challenges for next year and beyond, as set out in section 8 of the Annual report including: The Local Safeguarding Context; Early Help and Early Intervention; Strong Leadership and Strong Partnership; and, a Healthy Workforce.
6. The existing involvement with the voluntary sector and local communities and how this work would be developed. It was further noted that under the new arrangements it was proposed to work more closely with the Safeguarding Adults established voluntary sector arrangements for the benefit of the work with children and young people. Existing strengths would continue to be built upon for the benefit of all involved.
7. In conclusion, Members praised the work of the Board and welcomed the comprehensive and informative Annual Report. Thanks were expressed to all involved.
Alternative Options Considered: None, this report was for information.
DECISION: The Cabinet agreed to note the progress being made to safeguard children and young people and specifically noted the report and the Enfield Safeguarding Children Annual Report 2017/18.
RECOMMENDED TO COUNCIL to endorse the Safeguarding Children Annual Report 2017/18.
Reason: Enfield Safeguarding Children Board would require the commitment and support from multiple partners and from colleagues across the Council in order to continue to focus on improvements with the clear aim of reducing harm.
Councillor Ahmet Hasan (Associate Cabinet Member – Enfield North) arrived at this point of the meeting.