An introduction to child protection legislation in the UK

1 January 2018

There are different laws and guidelines that exist in different parts of the UK – there is not one single piece of child protection legislation for the UK. Current legislation is brought about because of The Children Act 1989 This was put into place to safeguard that everyone that work with children were sure and clear about their responsibilities and worked together. Also to ensure that if an allegation of child abuse were made all people working with children would be knowledgeable about what to do and how to act.

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Many problems were found in the way that reports of child abuse and neglect were dealt when an independent inquiry was done following the death of Victoria Climbie in the year 2000. Also, the independent inquiry leads to the finding that vulnerable people in society were being neglected in the part of safeguarding.
Lord Laming’s report aka, The Laming Report consisting of 58 recommendations particularly aimed at the safeguarding of children led to the government putting forward Every Child Matters paper and setting The Children Act 2004 into place.

Every child should receive help and guidance to achieve or receive positive outcomes in life. And this is what the Every Child Matters paper is in place to ensure. All children should have economic well-being, enjoy, make a positive contribution, stay safe and achieve. The Children Act 2004 is in place to improve and ensure children’s safeguarding. This director of children’s services is ultimately the person responsible for ensuring that all children are safeguarded, every local authority should have their allocated director. Because of this act changes were made and additional things such as local safeguarding boards were set up, and services became more mindful of what the children’s wishes are and put into more consideration. It has since become a duty of children’s services to work efficiently with a multi-agency approach to safeguard children and support the children under their cares welfare. The common assessment framework was introduced as part of this act to help it is a tool used to help identify children’s needs and assist in how to help meet them.

In 2009 a scheme was introduced and the personal information of all adults who work with children must be checked so that individuals who prove unsuitable to be around and working with children are prevented from doing so. This scheme is the disclosure and barring service. Adults working with children will undergo a DBS check and be awarded a certificate as proof of this. All work settings involving children will require staff to have these certificates.

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