Professionals need to act on information

    Information is worth nothing without analysis and action,
    experts told delegates at Community Care Live Children and
    today, writes Lauren

    Speaking at a main plenary session at the conference in London,
    Penny Thompson, former executive director of social services at
    Sheffield Council and new chief executive of Hackney Council,
    insisted that sharing information was essential in order to
    safeguard children.

    “But the critical job then is analysing that information – what
    does it tell you about a child? The information on its own is not
    sufficient. And actually, analysing is not sufficient either
    because if you don’t act, nothing changes.”

    But Voice for the Child in Care chief executive John Kemmis
    warned workers against becoming obsessed with adult
    information-sharing systems at the expense of involving, and
    listening to, children.

    “In relation to child protection, start with the child and stay
    with the child,” he said. “Retain that focus. Information gathering
    should be fit for purpose. And children have the right to know who
    is being told what.”

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