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Rapid Review of Child Protection Procedures in Wales

A rapid review of child protection procedures across Wales has found that, overall, children’s names are appropriately added to, or removed from, the Child Protection Register in Wales.

In October 2022 Welsh Government asked Care Inspectorate Wales (CIW) to lead on a multi-agency rapid review of decision making in relation to child protection. 

The focus of the system-wide review was to determine to what extent the current structures and processes in Wales ensure children’s names are appropriately placed on, and removed from, the child protection register when it is safe to do so. 

Safeguarding children is a collective responsibility. Working alongside ourselves and Estyn, CIW published the interim findings in June 2023 to share learning and promote best practice at the earliest possible opportunity. The full report, including recommendations for all agencies involved in child protection, has now been published.

The report identifies many areas of excellent practice. However, there are also areas for improvement and consistency across Wales. The report found that:

  • Overall, information sharing between agencies needs improving. The lack of a central information sharing IT platform is compounding this.
  • Workforce instability and vacancy gaps across a range of organisations that are involved in child protection can lead to instability for children and their families as they experience numerous changes in social workers. This is despite great efforts locally and nationally to address the workforce shortfall.
  • The child’s voice is an integral part of safeguarding decision making and there should be a consistent approach across Wales to ensure the voice of the child is heard.
  • Regular multi-agency training is needed to ensure there is a consistent approach and shared vision on safeguarding procedures and the threshold for significant harm across Wales.