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6.12 CPC Procedure for Raising Urgent Practice Issues

  1. If it seems from information presented to a conference or complex Strategy Meeting that a child is at immediate risk of harm, the child protection coordinator will inform the Service Managers, both Independent Chair Service and of the operational social work team immediately;
  2. Where concerns relate to practice by professionals external to children’s social care e.g. adult services or outside organisations the CPC must discuss the matter with the Service Manager, independent chair service, in the first instance, and the practice issue will be raised by way of a letter, which must be endorsed by the Service Manager, ICS;
  3. In all other cases where problems are identified in relation to a child's case, for example:
    • Invitations not made in a timely way, or key professionals not invited;
    • Conference unable to go ahead as it is not quorate;
    • Poor practice; for example lack of a report from the child’s social worker, if the children have not been seen at the required frequency or if the core groups have not taken place at the required frequency;
    • Drift – plans not being progressed, and always at the third RCPC due to length of plan;
    • If it is clear that there are Child Protection concerns that have not been responded to, e.g. new injuries or information come to light.

      The CPC will in the first instance attempt to resolve the issue with the social worker and Team Manager, using this procedure, which mirrors the IRO dispute resolution process.
    This procedure should be used to raise important and urgent matters with the Team Managers. Raising an alert ensures that the concern and the resolution of the concern is recorded on the child’s framework record.

The use of this procedure performs a different purpose to the CPC monthly management information to Service Managers, which includes positive feedback, assists in identifying trends and gives a more holistic view of the performance of the teams. Please see CPC Practice Issues Flowchart flowchart;

  1. The alert form should provide a brief and specific summary of their concerns to assist the team manager;
  2. The recommended actions should again be specific and clear and set out in order of priority for action by the social worker and Team Manager with timescales required;
  3. Upon receipt of the CPC alert form, the Team Manager, in consultation with the social worker, should address the identified concerns within the required timescale or within the maximum 10 working days. The Team Manager completes the CPC alert form: the “Response by Team Manager" section, as well as completing the relevant sections of the “Recommended action required” section. The form is then returned to the CPC, copy to SCIMT;
  4. The SCIMT admin will log all alert forms sent out, as well as the response on a centrally maintained database and also ensure that a copy of the alert form is placed in the documents section of the child's Framework record (with a case note to indicate that one has been completed & the date);
  5. If the social worker’s Team Manager does not respond in a satisfactory manner within the agreed timescales the CPC will progress the concerns to stage 1 of the process. At this stage, within 24 hours, the Service Manager ICS will communicate with the Service Manager for the child’s social worker. An urgent action plan will be agreed with actions to be taken within 7 days;
  6. If no resolution has been achieved stage 2 of the procedure requires that a professionals meeting should be held within 7 working days following the outcome of stage 1. This is to be chaired by the Service Manager (ICS), with attendance of the social worker, CPC, Team Manager and Children’s Service Manager to discuss and agree the actions to be taken. The relevant operational group manager and group manager (Safeguarding and Independent review) will discuss if there is still no resolution following the meeting;
  7. If the issues have not been satisfactorily resolved, stage 3 of the process requires that the group manager (safeguarding and independent review) will discuss concerns with the Service Director within 5 working days to agree any further action.