Every agency that has contact with children and young adults has a specific role and must share any concerns that a child is being abused with other professionals and in particular with the Local Safeguarding Children Board

Every agency that has contact with children and young adults has a specific role and must share any concerns that a child is being abused with other professionals and in particular with the Local Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB).
Below is a list of agencies with a description of the roles and responsibilities of the different organisations that could be involved when a child or a young adult has been abused.
Local Safeguarding Children Boards
Local Safeguarding Children Boards (LSCBs) are panels made up of different agencies. There is one in every local authority area and their role is to set out policies and procedures for child protection in that area.
The police have the duty and responsibility to investigate criminal offences committed against children and young people. The police have a legal duty to:
• investigate whether a crime has been committed, identify people responsible and secure evidence for any criminal proceedings;
• follow up any complaint or concern expressed about child abuse;
• report concerns to the local authority;
• liaise with social services when an offence against a child or a young person has been committed;
• in case of high danger, take a child away for 72 hours to keep the him/her safe. This is called police protection;
• have access to information through IMPACT Nominal Index (INI), which enables them to share information quickly and efficiently with other forces.
Police has emergency powers to enter premises and to ensure the immediate protection of children and young people who are believed to be suffering, or at risk of suffering, significant harm. Officers attending domestic violence incidents should be aware of the effect of such violence on children and young people. They need to make sure they handle all investigations of child abuse with high sensitivity.
National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC)
This is a voluntary organisation with the responsibility to identify and prevent cruelty to children and young adults. It contributes to multi-agency training and particularly multi-disciplinary training. The NSPCC is authorised to initiate proceedings to protect children under the terms of the Children Act 1989. NSPCC operates a Child helpline service advising adults and professionals on safeguarding matters and when necessary, liaises with local statutory agencies to refer all children and young people at risk of abuse, bullying and other concerns.
The National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC) doesn’t have a legal responsibility to follow up allegations of abuse, but it does have a duty to do so under its Royal Charter. They also have the legal power to make certain applications to court in order to protect children and young adults. In some areas, the NSPCC may also carry out some child protection work on behalf of the local authority.
It is essential, at all times, that organisations who are involved when a child/young person has been abused or harmed, work together effectively so that the interests of the child is met and so that each individual can contribute to supporting the child’s safety and well-being.
Social Services
Social services provide support for vulnerable children and young people. They are responsible for coordinating and implementing an inter-agency child protection plan to safeguard children and they make specific enquiries to enable them to decide what action they should take to safeguard and promote the child’s welfare. Social services also deal with courts when a child or a young person is thought to be in immediate danger and they always act as a principle point of contact for children where there are child protection concerns. In case parents or other family members need help, there are arrangements in place, so they can contact directly social services.
Psychologists review, gather and evaluate situations understanding why, how and when the child or young person became at risk/harmed/abused. They should help a child or young person to open up about their abuse/harm providing psychological evaluations on both the child and parents/carers. Psychologists should also recommend on whether the child should have psychological treatment and they should raise requests for other services that would help create a safe environment for the child or young person.
The role of a psychologist is that of a professional expert who strives to maintain an unbiased and objective position.
Hospital services
Hospital services need to be alert to signs and symptoms of abuse, neglect and harm. These organisations need to be conscious of parents and carers who visit different hospitals, and in particular they need to be conscious of parents and carers changing their versions of the facts related to an injury in case the child or young person’s version of events is different. They also need to notify the child’s or young person’s GP immediately about any visits to an A&E department when a child is 5 years of age or under.
Paediatricians examine children or young people believed to have been abused or harmed. They should be able to identify the medical needs the child or young person may have. They also can provide evidence in court in criminal and possible care proceedings. Because of this, they need to know how to gather and present evidence, undertake and supervise appropriate child protection training.
Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS)
Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services should be aware of their responsibilities for safeguarding children and their contribution to the child protection process. Although the assessment of risk to children is the responsibility of family and social workers, professionals within the mental health service have specific skills and knowledge and may be asked to contribute to investigations in order to advise on the effects of a parent’s illness or the risks associated with a child’s illness. Mental Health services should attend and submit written reports to child protection case conferences and in some circumstances, they must provide evidence in court assessing the risk posed by perpetrators of abuse and treating children or young people in families where abuse had occurred. CAMHS can provide support for those harmed with an initial assessment on any individual who has been abused and decide possible treatments. They can also communicate directly with other organisations on their finding.
General Practitioners (GPs)
GPs know when and how to refer a child/young person to social services in case they are concerned about abuse and neglect. They should also be informed immediately when other members of the primary health care team become concerned about the welfare of a child/young adult. General practitioners should share information with social services when enquiries are being made and their concerns should be discussed with colleagues who have experience in child protection matters. GPs are responsible for their staff and must ensure that nurses, practice managers, receptionists and any other staff who they employ, are given child protection training.
Midwives and Health visitors
Midwives and health visitors are able to identify risk factors to a child during pregnancy, birth and early years. They should identify children at risk of significant harm by being alert to parents’ behaviours during pregnancy and early parenthood. In fact, these professionals monitor children’s development and identify if there is a reason for concern. In the event of a child failing to thrive, they should notify social services if concerns are raised during the antenatal period and if they believe the child may be at risk from significant harm.
Health visitors contribute to all stages of a child protection process and in particularly cases they are needed for Serious Case Reviews (see Assessment 2.1.4). Health visitors develop a working partnership with the child’s family and consequently, they can immediately recognise risk factors that may be present for any children in the home. Giving the fact that they have close relationships with the children, health visitors are able to learn and listen to what the child has to say. Moreover, health visitors can cooperate with any other organisations and the family.
Educational Services
All schools and colleges have a pastoral responsibility towards their pupils and should take all reasonable steps to ensure that a child/young person’s welfare is safeguarded. In fact, educational services have their own policies and procedures in place for safeguarding children and young people. For this reason, they are able to identify children and vulnerable young people who are suffering, or likely to suffer, significant harm, and they can create and maintain a safe environment. Safeguarding and child protection policies in school settings should set out the procedures that all members of staff should follow whenever there are concerns about a child or a young person. A school’s child protection policy should also address how children will be made aware of risks, how children can recognise risks and how they will be given the skills to cope through the use of the preventative curriculum. Having said that, it is clear that educational services play a crucial role in assisting social services by referring concerns and providing information which will contribute to child protection investigations.
Volunteer organisations
Volunteer organisations can also help in case of abuse. Some people who notice signs of child abuse or maltreatment may not feel comfortable reporting to the police; for this reason, there are many abuse help lines that can be called to report abuse. These volunteer organisations will record any information given and report it to the proper authorities for immediate action. Volunteer organisations also offer pastoral support for those who have been sexually abused or harmed.
The United Kingdom Border Agency (UKBA)
UKBA does not provide direct service to children and young adults, but they are trained to deal with concerns about the safety and welfare of any children passing through customs. They are able to act on any concerns and place the child into better protection until the case is fully investigated. They can also make referrals to local, national and regional agencies. The UKBA is also responsible to identify children victims of human trafficking victims.