3.3 Ensuring Immediate Safety
The safety of children is paramount in all decisions relating to their welfare. Any action taken by staff should ensure that no child is left in immediate danger.
When considering whether immediate action is required to protect a child, all agencies should also consider whether action is required to safeguard and protect the welfare of any other children in the same household or related to the household or the household of an alleged perpetrator or elsewhere e.g. a work environment such as a school.
The law empowers anyone who has care of a child to do all that is reasonable in the circumstances to safeguard her/his welfare.
A teacher, (private)foster carer, childminder or any professional should, for example, take all reasonable steps to offer a child immediate protection from an abusive parent or carer.
Where abuse is alleged, suspected or confirmed in children admitted to hospital, they must not be discharged until a referral has been made to the relevant Children’s Social Care Services team in accordance with this procedure and a decision made as to the need for immediate protective action.
No child known to Children’s Social Care Services who is an inpatient in a hospital and about whom there are child protection concerns should be discharged home without a referral to establish that the home environment is safe. The concerns by medical staff are fully addressed and there is a plan in place for the on-going promotion and safeguarding of the child’s welfare - for further information about children in hospital, see also Fabricated and Induced Illness Procedure.