Report rates Havering child services ‘adequate’

Joy Hollister will be joining Havering Council as the group head of social care and learning in the

Joy Hollister will be joining Havering Council as the group head of social care and learning in the New Year - Credit: Archant

Havering Council’s child protection services have been rated as adequate by Ofsted.

The department was given the rating during an unannounced inspection in February this year.

Joy Hollister, Havering Council’s director of social care and learning said: “I am pleased about the rating because it means that we are doing a good job in protecting children and we have already been working on ways that we can make our services even better.”

The report stated that “social workers, the police, health visitors and youth workers are working more closely together to help and protect children” and that “social workers act quickly when problems get worse or if children are not safe”.

The inspectors also praised social workers for helping to make sure that disabled children are safe, people in authority figures “enjoy working with young people and build up good relationships with them”.

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The report stated that “good help is being given to some families who have a number of different troubles”.

Mrs Hollister said: “The report is good because it means that we are making all the requirements to safeguard and protect children and we are taking appropriate action when it is needed.”

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But the inspectors said that immediate changes needed to be made to the Multi Agency Safeguarding Hub, which sees professionals from a range of agencies including police, ambulance and social care working together.

It stated that managers must make sure staff work together more quickly and keep track of the work “so that no time is wasted and children get the help they need when they need it”.

They warned that workers “must make decisions quickly and make sure the right help is provided at the right time for families to stop their situation getting worse.”

The report also stated that the Havering Safeguarding Children Board is not working as well as it should.

Inspectors found that more organisations like health visitors and drug and alcohol counselling teams need to get involved in working with children and their families before problems become too big.

The report stated that social workers should think more about the different backgrounds of the families they are helping.

In November 2011, Havering Council was also rated as adequate in an Ofsted inspection for safeguarding and looking after children.

Mrs Hollister said: “I think we are going in the right direction and we are already working on making some of the changes.”

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