Police chief voices protection doubts

    A senior police officer has raised doubts about police involvement
    in structural changes outlined in the Children Bill.

    Detective superintendent Chris Bourlet, deputy head of child
    protection at Scotland Yard, told a child protection conference in
    London earlier this week that there were “tensions” within policing
    about how child protection was being delivered.

    Following Lord Laming’s report into the death of Victoria Climbie,
    which heavily criticised the police, child protection has become a
    specialist area within the Metropolitan Police, with all 32 London
    boroughs now guided centrally.

    Bourlet said that in other areas of the country, child protection
    was still organised locally, and both specialist and local models
    would need to interact with children’s trusts, which would be
    complicated.

    He added that he was concerned about how local safeguarding
    children boards would hold the police to account when chief
    constables reported directly to the Home Office.

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