UK Family Law Reform

Free information index

----- Original Message -----
From: david@mortimers-removals.co.uk
To: FOI@nelincs.gov.uk
Sent: Friday, April 25, 2014 4:27 PM
Subject: Re: Freedom of Information Request 7170_1314

Dear North East Lincolnshire Council,

It will never be possible for local authorities to protect children from abuse until their child protection polices are evidence based but there is no legislation or regulations which specifically requires local authorities to collect & hold information on child abuse perpetrators or for them to use that information to formulate their child protection policies. Nor is this information available for Government to use that information to formulate their child protection policies.

Best regards Dave

----- Original Message -----
From: FOI@nelincs.gov.uk
To: david@mortimers-removals.co.uk
Sent: Friday, April 25, 2014 12:05 PM
Subject: Freedom of Information Request 7170_1314

Dear Mr Mortimer

Thank you for your follow up request, reference number 7170_1314.

I wish to confirm that North East Lincolnshire Council are aware that there is no legislation or regulations which specifically requires local authorities to collect & hold information on child abuse perpetrators or for them to use that information to formulate their child protection policies.

It may be helpful if we explain that the Freedom of Information Act (2000) gives individuals and organisations the right of access to all types of recorded information held, at the time the request is received, by public authorities such as North East Lincolnshire Council. Section 84 of the Act states that in order for a request for information to be handled as a Freedom of Information (FOI) request, it must be for recorded information. For example, a Freedom of Information request would be for a copy of a policy, rather than an explanation as to why we have that policy in place. Where North East Lincolnshire Council receive requests that do not ask for recorded information, but ask more general questions about, for example for an opinion, it would fall outside of the scope of the Freedom of Information Act. Can we please ask that in future you restrict the subject of your Freedom of Information requests, to requests for recorded information.

If you believe that your request for information has not been handled in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act, you have the right to request an internal review by the Council. Please be clear about which elements of the Council’s response or handling of the request you are unhappy with, and would like the Council to address during the internal review process. If following this you are still dissatisfied you may contact the Office of the Information Commissioner. If you wish to request an internal review, please contact me and I will make the necessary arrangements.

Yours sincerely on behalf of North East Lincolnshire Council

Feedback Officer

Resources Directorate

----- Original Message -----
From: david@mortimers-removals.co.uk
To: FOI@nelincs.gov.uk
Sent: Thursday, April 24, 2014 2:17 PM
Subject: Re: Freedom of Information Request 7170_1314

Dear North East Lincolnshire Council,

Please will you kindly confirm if you are aware there is no legislation or regulations which specifically requires local authorities to collect & hold information on child abuse perpetrators or for them to use that information to formulate their child protection policies. Nor is this information available for Government to use that information to formulate their child protection policies.

Best regards Dave

----- Original Message -----
From: FOI@nelincs.gov.uk
To: david@mortimers-removals.co.uk
Sent: Thursday, April 24, 2014 1:35 PM
Subject: Freedom of Information Request 7170_1314

Dear Mr Mortimer

Thank you for your information request, reference number 7170_1314.

I wish to confirm that North East Lincolnshire Council holds the following information:

(A) what information the legislation & regulations require North East Lincolnshire Council to collect & hold on child abuse perpetrators.

(A) The Children Acts (1989 and 2004) place a general duty on local authorities, among other organisations, to safeguard and promote the welfare of children but this does not include a duty to collect information about the abusers.

Information about sexual and violent offenders is kept by the police, probation and prison services and may be shared with other agencies including local social services, housing and education authorities.

The MAPPA (Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements) Guidance, 2012 requires the local criminal justice agencies and other bodies dealing with certain offenders to work together in partnership in dealing with these offenders. There is a summary of MAPPA on page 1 of the guidance and the relevant provisions of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 are set out on pages 5 & 6. Local authorities have a duty to cooperate with the responsible authority (police/probation/prison service). This can involve information sharing about child sex offenders liable to management under MAPPA. See section 3 on page 15 regarding Local Education Authorities and section 6 on page 18 regarding social services.

Local authorities do collect information about the reasons why children are referred as being “in need” and those who are subject to a child protection plan. This includes details of whether a child is in danger of sexual, physical or emotional abuse.

Under the Children Act 2004 local authorities have a duty to share concerns about children’s welfare and safety and ensure preventative action. The Act requires each local authority to establish a Local Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB) for their area and specifies the organisations and individuals that should be represented on LSCBs. The LSCBs’ composition and duties are described in the statutory guidance, Working together to safeguard children: A guide to inter-agency working to safeguard and promote the welfare of children . This also specifies other legislation relevant to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children.

The information you have requested is already in the public domain and is reasonably accessible by other means. We would recommend looking through the Children’s Acts 1989 and 2004 along with the MAPPA (Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements) Guidance 2012 to find the information you have requested.

(B) who your child protection policies are designed to protect children from if they are not based on this information?

Child Protection Policies are designed to safeguard & promote the welfare of children & young people and to protect children from harm from whatever source. They are based on Legislation and Regulations.

If you believe that your request for information has not been handled in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act, you have the right to request an internal review by the Council. Please be clear about which elements of the Council’s response or handling of the request you are unhappy with, and would like the Council to address during the internal review process. If following this you are still dissatisfied you may contact the Office of the Information Commissioner. If you wish to request an internal review, please contact me and I will make the necessary arrangements.

Yours sincerely on behalf of North East Lincolnshire Council

----- Original Message -----
From: FOI@nelincs.gov.uk
To: david@mortimers-removals.co.uk
Sent: Tuesday, March 25, 2014 12:36 PM
Subject: Freedom of Information Request 6950_1314

Dear Mr Mortimer

Thank you for your request for information request, reference number 6950_1314.

I wish to confirm that North East Lincolnshire Council holds the following information:

(1) Please will you kindly tell me who set the criteria for what types of child abuse information is collected & held by North East Lincolnshire Council, was it (A) set by the Local Safeguarding Children Board or (B) by the Department of Education?

The Department of Education set the criteria for what types of child abuse information is collected & held by North East Lincolnshire Council.

(2) Please will you also kindly tell me if (A) the North East Lincolnshire Council’s Chief Executive (B) the Director of Children’s Services (C) any of the suitably qualified Social Work Professional Managers (D) the Local Safeguarding Children Board Manager or any of it's members have made a formal written complaint about the way in which child abuse perpetrator information is collected & held by North East Lincolnshire Council in the last 12 months or not?

No members have made a formal written complaint about the way in which child abuse perpetrator information is collected & held by North East Lincolnshire Council in the last 12 months.

If you are unhappy with the response you have received, you have the right to request an internal review by the Council. If following this you are still dissatisfied you may contact the Office of the Information Commissioner. If you wish to request an internal review, please contact me and I will make the necessary arrangements.

Yours sincerely on behalf of North East Lincolnshire Council

Feedback Officer

Directorate of People

----- Original Message -----
From: FOI@nelincs.gov.uk
To: david@mortimers-removals.co.uk
Sent: Wednesday, February 19, 2014 3:08 PM
Subject: Freedom of Information Request 6743_1314

Dear Mr Mortimer

Thank you for your information request, reference number 6743_1314. I wish to confirm that North East Lincolnshire Council holds the following information.

(a) the Council authority, council officer and the name of that officer, who decides on what information on child neglect and abuse is collected & held by your council;

North East Lincolnshire Council. Services for child abuse and neglect are spread across a range teams. Various officers are responsible for various elements of child neglect and abuse and for collating information in meeting that purpose. Information held is directly related to “Working Together to safeguard children” safeguarding guidance and government and Ofsted expectations. The Local Authority designated officer (LADO) holds relevant information in respect of allegations against people who work with children. Information on advise and neglect is held by the Local Safeguarding Children Board Manager and serious case review sub group in respect of cases meeting the criteria for serious case review. The Local Safeguarding Children Board leadership board request data on all areas of safeguarding activity in assessing the effectiveness of services. The Local Safeguarding Children Board quality assurance sub group undertake audits of front line practice in evidencing the quality of practice, relevant data is held in undertaking the audits.

(b) the means by which that person is held to account by a member of the public for their performance in discharging that public function;

Corporate and Statutory Complaints Processes will address any issues raised by members of the public, and performance indicators enable comparison between different Local Authorities.

(c) the council authority, the council officer and the name of that officer, responsible for your child protection policies;

The North East Lincolnshire Council’s Chief Executive is ultimately responsible for these policies, but is assisted and advised by the Director of Children’s Services and suitably qualified Social Work Professional Managers.

(d) the means by which that person is held to account by a member of the public for their performance in discharging that public function;

Corporate and Statutory Complaints Processes will address any issues raised by members of the public.

(e) how the function in (c) is properly discharged and held accountable for policies which would best effectively protect children from abuse if the person referred to in (a) does not collect any information on child abuse perpetration?"

The Chief Executive is held to account in the discharge of their responsibilities by regular periodic Ofsted Inspections of Children’s Services, the collation of comparative performance data between Local Authorities, and the oversight by the multi-agency Local Safeguarding Children Board. All Local Authorities are guided in practice by “Working Together” and other relevant legislation..

If you believe that your request for information has not been handled in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act, you have the right to request an internal review by the Council. Please be clear about which elements of the Council’s response or handling of the request you are unhappy with, and would like the Council to address during the internal review process. If following this you are still dissatisfied you may contact the Office of the Information Commissioner. If you wish to request an internal review, please contact me and I will make the necessary arrangements.

Yours sincerely on behalf of North East Lincolnshire Council

Feedback Officer

Resources Directorate

----- Original Message -----
From: FOI@nelincs.gov.uk
To: david@mortimers-removals.co.uk
Sent: Friday, January 24, 2014 9:56 AM
Subject: Freedom of Information Request 6511_1314

Dear Mr Mortimer

Thank you for your information request, reference number 6511_1314 which asked:

Please will you kindly tell me what the (a) gender and (b) familial relationship was to the child victim of offenders in substantiated child abuse cases in the area which you have a duty to protect children from abuse for the last full year which figures are available, broken down by (i) physical abuse, (ii) emotional abuse, (iii) sexual abuse and (iv) cases of neglect.

I wish to confirm that North East Lincolnshire Council does not hold the information you have requested.

We do not hold all of the information you have requested because we are not privy to information in respect of conviction unless this is in direct relation to a child with whom we have involvement.

We could provide basic information relating to the joint investigations between the police and children's social care but this would not be in relation to the outcome of a conviction.

You may be able to get a complete set of data from HM Court Service at the following address: http://www.justice.gov.uk/information-access-rights

If you are unhappy with the response you have received, you have the right to request an internal review by the Council. If following this you are still dissatisfied you may contact the Office of the Information Commissioner. If you wish to request an internal review, please contact me and I will make the necessary arrangements.

Yours sincerely on behalf of North East Lincolnshire Council

Feedback Officer

People and Communities Directorate

Who do local authorities protect children from? 28th December 2013

http://www.ukfamilylawreform.co.uk/abuse.htm