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What happens if someone reports concerns about my child?

If a professional worker or a family member or neighbour reports your child to the authorities, you may feel anxious, scared or angry that people are questioning you as a parent. This is a normal reaction, but the authorities must investigate when they have reasons to be worried to make sure that children are safe. Some reasons social workers might be worried are when a child's behaviour or appearance changes or when someone has noticed something troubling.

You may not be aware of how things happening in your home or your behaviour is affecting your child - the social worker allocated to your case can help you think about this.

Ask the social worker to explain the process to you, so that you know what to expect.

If social workers continue to have concerns, they may start a child protection investigation, which will include a Child Protection Conference. You will be invited to attend this conference and to say what you think about other people's worries.

The conference will agree a Child Protection Plan - which is a plan of actions to help keep your children safe - and a Core Group will make sure that the Plan is working. A Core Group is a smaller group of professionals that meets more often than the Child Protection Conference.

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