Social work body raps draft guidance

Social worker representatives have criticised the government for
failing to learn lessons from past child protection inquiries about
the importance of listening to children.

Draft guidance on safeguarding elements of the Children Act 2004
fails to clearly outline the need to take children’s views into
account, the British Association of Social Workers has said.

Responding to a consultation that closed last week, Nushra
Mapstone, BASW professional officer for England, said: “The
government has said so much as about being child-centred but
there’s not a strong enough sense of that [in the guidance]. We
have been told many times in inquiries that we have become so
caught up in the process that we are not listening to the children.
This is falling into the same trap”.

Section 11 of the Children Act 2004 places a duty to safeguard
children on agencies, including the police and prisons. It will
come into force in October.

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