Any adult working or volunteering with children may be subject to an allegation that they have harmed a child. This could occur within a professional setting or in a professional’s private life.
In the event of an allegation you must:
- record the details of the allegation
- contact Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO)
- phone Single Point of Access (SPA) if a child is named or at risk of harm
- contact your Inclusion and Improvement Advisor
- inform Ofsted or your childminder agency within 14 days (EYFS 3.8)
What happens next:
- LADO will decide whether the allegation meets the threshold for LADO involvement
- LADO will offer guidance on next steps (involvement of other agencies or internal disciplinary)
- In some cases the police may become involved where an allegation possibly meets criminal threshold.
- LADO will advise how to manage talking about the allegation with the named individual staff member and can advise regarding informing the child's parents or carers
- LADO will give their view regarding suspension. The setting may decide to suspend the individual from work or move them to other duties for the duration of the investigation
- the setting should reach a conclusion on their internal investigation regardless of whether or not the individual has resigned
Confidentiality should be respected and information regarding the allegation should only be shared on a need to know basis.
A comprehensive summary of any allegation should be kept on the individual's confidential personnel file including allegations found to be without substance.
Should an allegation be found to be true, then the individual may be dismissed from their job and be barred from working with children by DBS.
The Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) (opens a new window) works within Children’s Services for Achieving for Children. The LADO is alerted to all cases in where allegations have been made against any person who works with children who has:
- behaved in a way that has harmed, or may have harmed a child
- possibly committed a criminal offence against children, or related to a child; or
- behaved towards a child or children in a way that indicates they may pose a risk of harm to children
LADO can also be contacted directly for advice and guidance:
LADO Contact Details:
Phone: 07774 332675
Single Point of Access (SPA) (opens a new window) Kingston and Richmond acts as a central hub and front door for Children Services. Anyone who has concerns around children and families can refer in to SPA where information is collated and decisions are made within 24 hours.
Contact SPA if you have concerns about:
A child or young person who you suspect is being neglected or subject to physical, sexual or emotional abuse
family issues that are affecting a child or young person
an allegation of abuse against an adult
SPA Contact Details:
Phone: 020 8547 5008 (Monday to Friday 8am to 6pm)
Out of hours 020 8770 5000
SPA offers phone consultations to professionals and will provide advice and support in managing concerns.