The law is clear that we must work with families to help them look after their children, but we must also protect children and young people from neglect or abuse.
We keep a register of children and young people who are known to have been abused or who are believed to be at serious risk of suffering or likely to suffer significant harm.
What is a Child Protection Enquiry?
A child protection enquiry takes place if someone tells us, or the police, that they think a child is being abused.
Who can contact us?
Anyone can tell us, or tell the police if they are worried. This includes:
- children and their families;
- relatives, friends, neighbours; and
- professionals such as teachers, doctors, nurses and health visitors.
Anyone wishing to report possible abuse should contact either the police or nearest Children's Care Services Office.
If outside office hours telephone our emergency service: 0121 675 4806.
What happens after Birmingham City Council has been told?
We try to find out if any harm has been done to the child. The Child Protection Unit investigates with us, to see if a crime has been committed.
We may also need to talk to people who are involved in the child's care such as teachers, doctors or health visitors.
Will there need to be a medical examination?
If we feel that a medical examination is required, we ask parents' / carers' permission. We may also carry out a medical examination on other children in the family. A specialist doctor carries out the examination. Parents and carers have the right to be there, but will be asked to leave if we feel they are disrupting the medical examination.
What happens next?
We do one or more of the following:
- If there is no evidence of harm we tell parents / carers, and there may be no further action.
- We may offer help or advice.
- If there is still concern for the child's safety, a child protection conference is held.
Can the children be taken away?
We do our best to keep families together when we can. However, in some cases, where we feel a child is in immediate danger, arrangements for temporary accommodation are made. This may mean the child staying with relatives, friends or in a foster home until it is safe for them to return home.
Your right to be heard
At Children's Social Care Services we always aim to improve the services we provide. You can make comments, compliments or complaints about our services via the council's Contact Centre: 0121 303 5161
Birmingham Safeguarding Children Board
Birmingham Safeguarding Children Board (BSCB) promotes children's welfare as well as developing, monitoring and reviewing child protection policies, procedures and practices within Birmingham. The BSCB agrees how local services and professionals should work together to safeguard the welfare of children.
Visit the BSCB web page for more information about child protection in Birmingham and for the link to the Safeguarding web site.