Safeguarding News July & August 2018
Welcome to our summer round up of safeguarding news for July and August which includes several important statutory changes and updates across all sectors, including the revised Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018. SAFE has also published its latest public course list for face to face training in Eye, Suffolk.
Training Course Schedule
For the latest training dates and a comprehensive list of available courses click here.
A Roundup of Safeguarding News for July & August
The rules about automatic disqualification for trustees have changed, more reasons are being added and the rules will also apply to some charity senior manager positions (chief executives and finance directors - and those in equivalent roles).
New reasons for disqualification include:
• being in contempt of court
• being named under particular anti-terrorism legislation or
• being on the sex offenders register.
If you’re a trustee or senior manager (CEO or finance director level) at a charity, check that you’re not going to be disqualified by reading the guidance for individuals.
From 1 August 2018 you must resign if you’re a senior manager. Charity trustees will also have to stop acting in that role.
Trustees must take reasonable steps to protect your charity’s beneficiaries, staff, volunteers and those connected with the activities of the charity from harm.
Legislation and Bills
Statutory and Non Statutory Guidance
Statutory, Non Statutory Guidance, Guidelines, Consultations, Strategies, Advice and Briefing Updates
New guidance for healthcare workers on safeguarding adults at risk has been published by the Royal College of Nursing
This guidance includes all health and social care staff.Adult Safeguarding: Roles and Competencies for Health Care Staff August 2018
• Working Together 2018 Statutory Guidance, published July 2018 (For more details see SAFEcic’s special news letter)
The Scottish Government is seeking views on proposed changes to the criminal offence of cruelty to children, currently set out in section 12 of the Children and Young Persons (Scotland) Act 1937. We are also consulting on possible changes to the criminal offence of sexual abuse of trust, legislated for in section 42 of the Sexual Offences (Scotland) Act 2009.
Consultation closes November 14th 2018
Reports, Reviews, Research and Inquiries
1. An assurance report reflecting on the current multi-agency safeguarding arrangements 2018 within Derbyshire. Derbyshire Safeguarding Children Board brought together a number of partner agencies from health and social care to support a police investigation of reports of historical physical and sexual abuse of children, which took place at Aston Hall Hospital between the 1950s and 1970s.
On 25 July 2018, the board published an independent assurance report reflecting on the current multi-agency safeguarding arrangements within Derbyshire, with reference to Aston Hall Hospital.
Published alongside it is Operation Thalia : Aston Hall Hospital Police Findings Report 2018, the police findings report of Derbyshire Constabulary, which is a detailed account of the investigation of the allegations of abuse at Aston Hall.
2. An Extended Child Practice Review published by Cardiff and Vale of Glamorgan Regional Safeguarding Children Board on an adopted baby who died in May 2016 when she was 18 months old.
The child subject of this Review was initially considered under the All Wales Child Protection Procedures and the child’s name was added to the Child Protection Register, at birth, in November 2014. The child became, “looked after” by the local authority following birth. A period of assessment ensued to consider the child’s permanent care plan. The child was placed in foster care in November 2014, where the child remained until placement with the adoptive family in September 2015. The placement in foster care was with the Birth Mother’s voluntary consent until an Interim Care Order was granted, a month later, in December 2014.
A Care Order and a Placement Order were granted in May 2015 and the child was placed in September 2015, with a two-parent family and a previously adopted older child. One parent assumed the majority of the caring responsibilities for the child.
The child remained as a looked after child following their placement with their family until the making of the Adoption Order. The Adoption Order was granted in May 2016.
Later in May 2016, the child suffered injuries at home and died in intensive care.
Scully-Hicks, originally of Delabole, Cornwall, who pleaded not guilty was found guilty at Cardiff Crown Court after trial last year.
He must serve at least 18 years behind bars before being considered for release.
3. The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse has published its report into the Ampleforth and Downside hearings, as part of its investigation into the Roman Catholic Church.
The report highlights the evidence heard by the Inquiry of appalling sexual abuse inflicted over decades on children as young as seven at Ampleforth and 11 at Downside.
It also concludes that there was a culture of acceptance of abusive behaviour and the prioritisation of monks and their reputations over the protection of children.
Worthy of Note
1. Reporting of serious safeguarding incidents by charities continues to increase, according to the Charity Commission. The regulator has published an update on the work of its interim safeguarding taskforce, and has confirmed that it received 620 safeguarding related reports in April and May 2018, compared to 196 during the same period in 2017.
In total, since February, the Commission has received and been responding to 1,152 reports of serious incidents (RSIs) about safeguarding (to end May 2018).
2. Investigations into online child abuse risk being "significantly hampered" by the recent EU data crackdown, the National Crime Agency has warned.
The agency said online criminals would be able to hide their identity because new data protection laws affect a vital database of website owners used to fight cyber crime.
The “Whois” registry contains names and contact details for millions of website owners but police forces have seen access to the service throttled in recent weeks, making it harder to track down the owners of illegal websites.
Some data providers are now blocking access to the service across the European Union because the EU's GDPR legislation bans the sharing of personal data without individuals’ consent.
3. There is a newly recorded case of FGM in the UK every two hours. Much more needs to be done to support survivors of female genital mutilation and protect girls at risk, as the latest NHS statistics reveal there is a newly recorded case of FGM every two hours in the UK.
The National FGM Centre says it is vital for agencies, such as the police, education, health and social care, to work better together to prosecute those who carry out this type of abuse.
According to the latest figures released by NHS Digital (released on July 5) there were 6,195 women and girls treated for FGM in the past financial year and, of those, 4,495 were newly recorded cases.
Of the 6,195 women and girls, 85 cases of FGM took place in the UK.
4. Telephone scammers who target vulnerable and elderly consumers with scams and nuisance telephone calls have been stopped in their tracks, with a National Trading Standards project blocking more than 100,000 unwanted calls in less than a year.
The half-a-million-pound project, announced by Prime Minister Theresa May last April and funded by the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, was coordinated by the National Trading Standards Scams Team and supported by local Trading Standards departments and saw over 99% of unwanted calls blocked over an 11-month period.
Over 1,500 trueCall call blocking devices were provided to potentially vulnerable consumers as part of the project, including consumers with dementia and those deemed to be most at risk of receiving scams and nuisance calls. Members of the public were also invited to apply for call
blockers via the Friends Against Scams website – run by National Trading Standards to help people spot and report scams.
5.Children affected by domestic abuse to benefit from £8 million fund. The fund gives charities, local authorities and other organisations the chance to bid for money for projects designed to intervene early to help children who have been directly or indirectly affected by domestic abuse. Domestic abuse ruins the lives of its victims with more than 2 million people subjected to this terrible crime each year. However, NSPCC statistics show that as many as 1 in 5 children in the UK are also witness to or exposed to this horrible crime during childhood.
6. The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has served a £200,000 monetary penalty notice on the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) after it sent a bulk email that identified possible victims of non-recent child sexual abuse.
The Inquiry, set up in 2014 to investigate the extent to which institutions failed to protect children from sexual abuse, did not keep confidential and sensitive personal information secure, the ICO said, and so breached the Data Protection Act 1998.
7. The Children and Social Work Act 2017 placed a duty on the Secretary of State for Education to make the new subjects of Relationships Education at primary and Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) at secondary compulsory through regulations. The Act also provides a power for the Secretary of State to make Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education (PSHE), or elements of the subject, mandatory in all schools. The department has engaged thoroughly with a wide range of interested organisations and conducted a call for evidence on the content of the subjects, and the status of PSHE.
8. The father of a boy who was the victim of a suspected acid attack is among five men who have appeared in court. The three-year-old suffered serious burns at the Home Bargains store in Worcester.
A 39-year-old from Wolverhampton and four others appeared at Kidderminster Magistrates' Court charged with conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm.
9. Expanding the scope of the UK Council for Child Internet Safety (UKCCIS), and guided by the government’s Internet Safety Strategy, UKCIS will work to improve the online safety of everyone in the UK, particularly the needs of groups who are often disproportionately targets of online abuse.
10. The Prison Service has confirmed Hollesley Bay is among several open prisons being used to accommodate the growing numbers of sex offenders in the criminal justice system.
In a letter to Hollesley Parish Council, governor Declan Moore said there would be no increase in prisoner numbers and that all sex offenders would be “suitably risk assessed”.
However, the news has been met with concern from some quarters of the community, particularly over the lack of information.
11. A paedophile law lecturer who went on the run as he battled to evade justice has been arrested in Romania.
Julian Myerscough, 56, formerly of Alexandra Road in Lowestoft, was found guilty of possessing indecent images of children, by Ipswich Crown Court, in September 2015.
However as the jury retired to consider their verdict, Myerscough left the court and fled.
12. Adults will be able to view computer-generated child abuse images online because of a loophole in new laws barring under-18s from porn sites, the Government has been warned.
Baroness Howe, a former chairman of the Broadcasting Standards Commission, is leading a campaign for ministers to rethink the legislation, which she says “leaves the door wide open” for adults to view online violent porn and child abuse images that would be illegal to possess.
13. Charges for modern slavery offences have risen by more than a quarter in the last year according to figures published today (9 August) by the Crown Prosecution Service.
In 2017/18, 239 suspects were charged with modern slavery offences, a 27 per cent rise from the year before.
14. The Upper Tribunal has held that regulations under the Equality Act 2010 excluding children who have a ‘tendency to physical abuse’ from its protection give rise to unlawful discrimination under Article 14 ECHR.
15. The Ministry of Justice has written to the NSPCC stating that the Government believes current laws on the age of consent and on non-consensual sexual activity already provide adequate protection for 16 and 17-year-olds from exploitation by the adults who work with them. It’s currently illegal for some groups of professionals, like teachers, care workers and youth justice staff, to be involved in sexual activity with a 16 or 17-year-old child under their supervision. The NSPCC Trust to Lead campaign has been calling for this to be extended to other adults working with children, including sports coaches.
16. Police chiefs are to develop a plan to tackle sexual harassment in policy by autumn. The action plan is being developed in response to a survey by UNISON that uncovered the extent of sexual harassment against police staff. Half (49%) of the police staff questioned had heard sexualised jokes told repeatedly at work, and one in five (19%) had received a sexually explicit email or text from a colleague.
This action plan will equip staff and supervisors to challenge this behaviour and encourage reporting in a safe and secure work environment.
17. A new national response unit will be established to help local authorities, support vulnerable children at risk of exploitation by criminal gangs.
The unit, backed by up to £2million investment, will offer bespoke support to local councils to help stop child sexual exploitation, trafficking, modern slavery and other attempts by criminals to take advantage of vulnerable children and coerce them into crimes like drug trafficking.
Children who go missing from home or care are vulnerable to exploitation from a range of criminal threats and the new national response unit to launch in 2019 will provide tailored support to local areas so they can respond effectively to these safeguarding challenges and learn from what works.
And the reason to remain vigilant in all aspects of safeguarding
1. A football coach convicted of dozens of sexual assaults, George Ormond, 62, was found guilty, after a five-week trial at Newcastle Crown Court of 36 charges relating to the abuse of 18 victims between the mid-1970s and the mid-1990s.
He preyed on his victims while working as volunteer in the Newcastle United youth program, as a coach at a boys’ football club, and helping on the Duke of Edinburgh scheme in a Newcastle school.
2. The mother and grandmother of a teenage boy who died after suffering neglect have been convicted of his manslaughter.
Jordan Burling’s mother Dawn Cranston, 45, and his grandmother Denise Cranston, 70, were found to both have played a part in the ill-treatment which led to his death.
The pair were found guilty of manslaughter at Leeds Crown Court.
3. Cyber criminals are sending victims their own passwords in an attempt to trick them into believing they have been filmed on their computer watching porn and demanding payment.
There have been over 110 of reports made to Action Fraud from concerned victims who have received these scary emails.
In a new twist not seen before by Action Fraud, the emails contain the victim’s own password in the subject line. Action Fraud has contacted several victims to verify this information, who have confirmed that these passwords are genuine and recent.
The emails demand payment in Bitcoin and claim that the victim has been filmed on their computer watching porn.
4. 18 years in prison, for Hull man who raped children in Kenya
. A locksmith from Hull who sexually abused and raped children in Kenya has been sentenced to 18 and a half years in prison following an investigation by the National Crime Agency.
5. Robert King of Bay Road, Bracknell, is the third man to be convicted following an investigation led by the National Crime Agency (NCA). He was identified after NCA officers received information he and 46-year old Raymond Taylor were was posting indecent images in an online chat room.Taylor of Beecham Road, Reading was jailed for four years in January after pleading guilty to 11 counts of making and eight of distributing indecent images of children.
6. A man has been jailed for 45 months after admitting building up a catalogue of more than 640,000 images and videos of child sex abuse.
Mark Ferguson, 56, told officers he was aroused by the images which included newborn babies to teenagers – and that he was “more of a collector” who wanted full sets of images.
7. A doctor who was found with more than 19,000 images and videos of women patients taken in his surgery has been jailed for 14 months.
Thair Altaii secretly filmed and photographed the patients during medical consultations over a number of years at his Sunderland surgery.
He was convicted of three counts of voyeurism between 2008 and 2014.
8. Eleven women (some of them Nuns) and one man - all aged between 62 and 85 - had been charged in connection with the abuse of children at Smyllum Park.
The home, which closed in 1981, was run by a Catholic order known as Daughters of Charity of St Vincent de Paul.
9. 51 children and 72 adults were identified as potential victims of trafficking last month in a Europe-wide week of action involving 33 law enforcement agencies in the UK.
The National Crime Agency (NCA) coordinated the operation in the UK during which 44 people were arrested for a range of criminality, including rape of a child, sexual assault and modern slavery offences.
A further 41 suspects were arrested across Europe.
10. A man, 42 and woman, 36, face five charges each, including possession of extreme pornographic images.
The pair, both from east London but are not being named, are accused of FGM and failing to protect a girl from risk of genital mutilation.
• A Social Market Foundation (SMF) report Looked-after Children:The Silent Crisis 2018 has analysed inspection data from Ofsted, which assesses local councils’ services for children in need of help and protection, looked-after children and care leavers.
The analysis showed that 63% of Local Authorities in England are providing services for these children which either “require improvement” or are simply “inadequate.”
The calculations based on these figures show that this means that 47,085 children – 65% of all looked-after children – are looked after in Local Authorities that are deemed to be falling short of a good standard.
• the Children’s Commissioner’s annual study of childhood vulnerability in England 2018, tells us about the numbers of children who are growing up in England with vulnerability and risks that could affect their lives, wellbeing and life chances.
Over 2 million children in England living in families with substantial complex needs, and that of these 1.6 million children have no established, recognised form of additional support. In addition there are multiple other forms of vulnerability, risk and need. We show the latest data on 70 aggregate groups that we will use to monitor trends, consider aggregate levels of need and frame our work to hear the views of children and young people.
If you would like to know more about SAFE please don’t hesitate to contact us.
The SAFE Team