Where a child has been significantly harmed, or is deemed to be at risk of significant harm, their name may be placed on the local Child Protection Register. Child Protection Registers have no legal status but are a means by which agencies are alerted to children within their local area, who have suffered, or are at risk of suffering, significant harm and need a multi agency child protection plan to be put in place. The register will record the areas of concern which are deemed to have placed the child at risk, and these will act as an alert to any professional contacting the register in relation to the child and their circumstances.
The Child Protection Register is maintained by Social Work Services.
The Child Protection Register provides a central point of rapid inquiry for professional staff who are concerned about a child’s safety, development or welfare.
The decision to place a child’s name on the Child Protection Register should be taken by the chairperson at an initial Child Protection Conference, when there are reasonable grounds to believe or suspect that a child has been suffering, or will suffer, significant harm, and an inter-agency child protection plan is needed to protect the child.
Each local authority area has it’s own child protection register containing the names and details of children in their area where there are concerns of future risk. Child protection registers are held by each local authority.
Following the decision to register a child at the Child Protection Conference it is the responsibility of the chair to contact the keeper of the local register and ensure that all necessary details are recorded on the register. These details must also be given to the out of hours Social Work Services. The keeper of the register should notify other relevant local authorities in writing when a registered child/family moves into, or out of, their area.
The Child protection plan is reviewed regularly through the Core Group. A formal review of the Child Protection plan takes place at the Child Protection Review Conference which will take place three months following the Initial Child Protection Conference. Further adjustments and reviews of the plan will take place at the subsequent Core Group meetings and Child Protection Review Conference.
A pre-birth conference is required to consider the need for registration and the development of a child protection plan.