Children and Social Work Bill (HL Bill 57)

Children and Social Work BillPage 10

(a) a reference in this section to a local authority includes a
reference to the combined authority, and

(b) a reference in this section to functions specified in subsection (2)
is, in relation to the combined authority, to be read as a
5reference to those functions so far as exercisable by the
combined authority.”

(2) In section 15 of the Childcare Act 2006 (powers of the Secretary of State to
secure proper performance etc), after subsection (6) insert—

(6A) If any functions of an English local authority under this Part are
10exercisable by a combined authority by virtue of section 105 of the Local
Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Act 2009—

(a) a reference in any of subsections (3) to (6) to an English local
authority includes a reference to the combined authority, and

(b) a reference in those subsections to functions under this Part is,
15in relation to the combined authority, to be read as a reference
to those functions so far as exercisable by the combined
authority.”

Serious child safeguarding cases

11 Child Safeguarding Practice Review Panel

20In the Children Act 2004, before section 17 insert—

“Child Safeguarding Practice Review Panel
16A Child Safeguarding Practice Review Panel

(1) The Secretary of State must establish a panel to be known as the Child
Safeguarding Practice Review Panel.

(2) 25The Secretary of State may make any arrangements that the Secretary
of State considers appropriate for the establishment of the Panel in
accordance with this section.

(3) The Panel is to consist of a chair and members appointed by the
Secretary of State.

(4) 30A person may be appointed for a particular period or otherwise.

(5) The Secretary of State may remove the chair or a member of the Panel
if satisfied that the chair or member—

(a) has become unfit or unable to discharge his or her functions
properly, or

(b) 35has behaved in a way that is not compatible with continuing in
office.

(6) The arrangements that may be made by the Secretary of State under
subsection (2) include arrangements about—

(a) the Panel’s proceedings;

(b) 40annual or other reports.

Children and Social Work BillPage 11

(7) The Secretary of State may provide staff, facilities or other assistance to
the Panel (and the arrangements that may be made under this section
include arrangements about those matters).

(8) The Secretary of State may pay remuneration or expenses to the chair
5and members of the Panel.”

12 Functions of the Panel

In the Children Act 2004, after section 16A (inserted by section 11), insert—

16B Functions of the Panel

(1) The functions of the Child Safeguarding Practice Review Panel are, in
10accordance with arrangements made by the Secretary of State—

(a) to identify serious child safeguarding cases in England which
raise issues that are complex or of national importance, and

(b) where they consider it appropriate, to arrange for those cases to
be reviewed under their supervision.

(2) 15The purpose of a review under subsection (1)(b) is to ascertain what (if
any) lessons can be learned from the case about the way in which local
authorities or others should work to safeguard children.

(3) Where the Panel arrange for a case to be reviewed under their
supervision, they must—

(a) 20ensure that the reviewer provides a report on the outcome of the
review;

(b) ensure—

(i) that the reviewer makes satisfactory progress, and

(ii) that the report is of satisfactory quality;

(c) 25provide the report to the Secretary of State.

(4) The Panel must publish the report, unless they consider it
inappropriate to do so.

(5) If the Panel consider it inappropriate to publish the report, they must
publish any information relating to the lessons to be learned from the
30case that they consider it appropriate to publish.

(6) The arrangements under subsection (1) may include arrangements
about—

(a) criteria to be taken into account by the Panel in determining
whether serious child safeguarding cases raise issues that are
35complex or of national importance;

(b) eligibility for appointment as a reviewer;

(c) the selection process for appointment of a reviewer;

(d) the person who is to select a reviewer;

(e) the supervisory powers of the Panel in relation to a reviewer;

(f) 40removal of a reviewer;

(g) payments of remuneration or expenses to a reviewer by the
Secretary of State;

(h) the procedure for a review;

(i) the form and content of a report;

Children and Social Work BillPage 12

(j) the time when a report is to be provided to the Secretary of
State, or published.

(7) The Panel must have regard to any guidance given by the Secretary of
State in connection with functions conferred by this section.

(8) 5Guidance given by the Secretary of State may include guidance about—

(a) circumstances in which it may be appropriate for a serious child
safeguarding case to be reviewed;

(b) matters to be taken into account in deciding whether a review is
making satisfactory progress or whether a report is of
10satisfactory quality.

(9) In this section—

  • a “reviewer” means any one or more persons appointed to review
    a case under the supervision of the Panel;

  • “serious child safeguarding cases” means cases in which—

    (a)

    15abuse or neglect of a child is known or suspected by a
    local authority or another person exercising functions in
    relation to children, and

    (b)

    the child has died or been seriously harmed;

  • “serious harm” includes serious or long-term impairment of
    20mental health or intellectual, emotional, social or behavioural
    development.”

13 Events to be notified to the Panel

In the Children Act 2004, after section 16B (inserted by section 12), insert—

16C Events to be notified to the Panel

(1) 25A local authority in England must notify the Child Safeguarding
Practice Review Panel of any of the following that occur in their area—

(a) the death of a child who is known or suspected by the local
authority to have been abused or neglected;

(b) serious harm to a child who is known or suspected by the local
30authority to have been abused or neglected;

(c) the death of a child who was looked after by a local authority
(within the meaning given by section 22(1) of the Children Act
1989);

(d) the death of a child in a regulated setting.

(2) 35A local authority in England must have regard to any guidance given
by the Secretary of State in connection with their functions under this
section.

(3) In this section—

  • “regulated setting” has the meaning given by regulations to be
    40made by the Secretary of State;

  • “serious harm” has the meaning given by section 16B(9).”

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14 Information

In the Children Act 2004, after section 16C (inserted by section 13), insert—

16D Information

(1) The Child Safeguarding Practice Review Panel may, for the purpose of
5enabling or assisting the performance of a function conferred by section
16B, request a person or body to provide information specified in the
request to—

(a) the Panel,

(b) a reviewer, or

(c) 10another person or body specified in the request.

(2) The person or body to whom a request under this section is made must
comply with the request.

(3) The Panel may enforce the duty under subsection (2) against the person
or body by making an application to the High Court or the county court
15for an injunction.

(4) The information may be used by the Panel, reviewer, or other person or
body to whom it is provided only for the purpose mentioned in
subsection (1).

(5) In this section “reviewer” means any one or more persons appointed to
20review a case under the supervision of the Panel.”

Local arrangements for safeguarding and promoting welfare of children

15 Local arrangements for safeguarding and promoting welfare of children

After section 16D of the Children Act 2004 (inserted by section 14 of this Act)
insert—

25“Safeguarding partners for local authority areas
16E Local arrangements for safeguarding and promoting welfare of
children

(1) The safeguarding partners for a local authority area in England must
make arrangements for—

(a) 30the safeguarding partners, and

(b) any relevant agencies that they consider appropriate,

to work together in exercising their functions, so far as the functions are
exercised for the purpose of safeguarding and promoting the welfare of
children in the area.

(2) 35The arrangements must include arrangements for the safeguarding
partners to work together to identify and respond to the needs of
children in the area.

(3) In this section—

  • “relevant agency”, in relation to a local authority area in England,
    40means a person who—

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    (a)

    is specified in regulations made by the Secretary of State,
    and

    (b)

    exercises functions in that area in relation to children;

  • “safeguarding partner”, in relation to a local authority area in
    5England, means—

    (a)

    the local authority;

    (b)

    a clinical commissioning group for an area any part of
    which falls within the local authority area;

    (c)

    the chief officer of police for a police area any part of
    10which falls within the local authority area.”

16 Local child safeguarding practice reviews

After section 16E of the Children Act 2004 (inserted by section 15 of this Act)
insert—

16F Local child safeguarding practice reviews

(1) 15The safeguarding partners for a local authority area in England must
make arrangements in accordance with this section—

(a) to identify serious child safeguarding cases which raise issues
of importance in relation to the area, and

(b) for those cases to be reviewed under the supervision of the
20safeguarding partners, where they consider it appropriate.

(2) The purpose of a review under subsection (1)(b) is to ascertain what (if
any) lessons can be learned from the case about the way in which
persons in the area should work to safeguard and promote the welfare
of children.

(3) 25Where a case is reviewed under the supervision of the safeguarding
partners, they must—

(a) ensure that the reviewer provides a report on the outcome of the
review;

(b) ensure—

(i) 30that the reviewer makes satisfactory progress, and

(ii) that the report is of satisfactory quality;

(c) provide the report to the Secretary of State and the Child
Safeguarding Practice Review Panel.

(4) The safeguarding partners must publish the report, unless they
35consider it inappropriate to do so.

(5) If the safeguarding partners consider it inappropriate to publish the
report, they must publish any information relating to the lessons to be
learned from the case that they consider it appropriate to publish.

(6) The Secretary of State may by regulations make provision about—

(a) 40criteria to be taken into account by the safeguarding partners in
determining whether serious child safeguarding cases raise
issues of importance in relation to the area;

(b) the appointment or removal of a reviewer by the safeguarding
partners, including provision for a reviewer to be appointed by
45the safeguarding partners from a list provided by the Secretary
of State;

Children and Social Work BillPage 15

(c) the time when a report is to be provided to the Secretary of State
or the Child Safeguarding Practice Review Panel, or published;

(d) the procedure for a review;

(e) the form and content of a report.

(7) 5In this section “reviewer” means any one or more persons appointed to
review a case under the supervision of the safeguarding partners for a
local authority area.”

17 Further provision about arrangements

After section 16F of the Children Act 2004 (inserted by section 16 of this Act)
10insert—

16G Further provision about arrangements

(1) This section applies in relation to arrangements made under section
16E or 16F by the safeguarding partners for a local authority area in
England.

(2) 15The safeguarding partners must publish the arrangements.

(3) The arrangements must include arrangements for scrutiny by an
independent person of the effectiveness of the arrangements.

(4) The safeguarding partners and relevant agencies for the local authority
area must act in accordance with the arrangements.

(5) 20Subsection (6) applies where a person is specified in regulations under
section 16E(3) for the purposes of the definition of “relevant agency”.

(6) The regulations may make provision for the enforcement against the
person of the duty imposed by subsection (4), if the Secretary of State
considers that there would otherwise be no appropriate means of
25enforcing that duty against the person.

(7) At least once in every 12 month period, the safeguarding partners must
prepare and publish a report on—

(a) what the safeguarding partners and relevant agencies for the
local authority area have done as a result of the arrangements,
30and

(b) how effective the arrangements have been in practice.”

18 Information

After section 16G of the Children Act 2004 (inserted by section 17 of this Act)
insert—

16H 35Information

(1) Any of the safeguarding partners for a local authority area in England
may, for the purpose of enabling or assisting the performance of
functions conferred by section 16E or 16F, request a person or body to
provide information specified in the request to—

(a) 40the safeguarding partner or any other safeguarding partner for
the area,

(b) any of the relevant agencies for the area,

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(c) a reviewer, or

(d) another person or body specified in the request.

(2) The person or body to whom a request under this section is made must
comply with the request.

(3) 5The safeguarding partner that made the request may enforce the duty
under subsection (2) against the person or body by making an
application to the High Court or the county court for an injunction.

(4) The information may be used by the person or body to whom it is
provided only for the purpose mentioned in subsection (1).”

19 10Funding

After section 16H of the Children Act 2004 (inserted by section 18 of this Act)
insert—

16I Funding

(1) The safeguarding partners for a local authority area in England may
15make payments towards expenditure incurred in connection with
arrangements under section 16E or 16F—

(a) by making payments directly, or

(b) by contributing to a fund out of which the payments may be
made.

(2) 20The payments that may be made include payments of remuneration,
allowances or expenses to a reviewer or an independent person.

(3) The safeguarding partners for a local authority area in England may
provide staff, goods, services, accommodation or other resources to any
person for purposes connected with arrangements under section 16E or
2516F.

(4) Relevant agencies for a local authority area in England may make
payments towards expenditure incurred in connection with
arrangements under section 16E—

(a) by making payments directly, or

(b) 30by contributing to a fund out of which the payments may be
made.

(5) In this section an “independent person” means an independent person
mentioned in section 16G(3).”

20 Combining safeguarding partner areas and delegating functions

35After section 16I of the Children Act 2004 (inserted by section 19 of this Act)
insert—

16J Combining safeguarding partner areas and delegating functions

(1) The safeguarding partners for two or more local authority areas in
England may agree that their areas are to be treated as a single area for
40the purposes of sections 16E to 16I and subsections (3) to (5) of this
section.

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(2) References in sections 16E to 16I and in subsections (3) to (5) of this
section to a local authority area are to be read in accordance with any
agreement under subsection (1).

(3) Where a local authority is a safeguarding partner for the same local
5authority area as another local authority (as a result of an agreement
under subsection (1)), the authorities may arrange for one of them to
carry out functions under sections 16E to 16I on behalf of the other.

(4) Where a clinical commissioning group is a safeguarding partner for the
same local authority area as another clinical commissioning group, the
10groups may arrange for one of them to carry out functions under
sections 16E to 16I on behalf of the other.

(5) Where a chief officer of police is a safeguarding partner for the same
area as another chief officer of police, the officers may arrange for one
of them to carry out functions under sections 16E to 16I on behalf of the
15other.”

21 Guidance by Secretary of State

After section 16J of the Children Act 2004 (inserted by section 20 of this Act)
insert—

16K Guidance by Secretary of State

(1) 20The safeguarding partners and relevant agencies for a local authority
area in England must have regard to any guidance given by the
Secretary of State in connection with functions conferred on them by
sections 16E to 16J.

(2) Guidance given by the Secretary of State in connection with functions
25conferred by section 16F may include guidance about—

(a) circumstances in which it may be appropriate for a serious child
safeguarding case to be reviewed;

(b) matters to be taken into account in deciding whether a review is
making satisfactory progress or whether a report is of
30satisfactory quality.”

22 Interpretation

After section 16K of the Children Act 2004 (inserted by section 21 of this Act)
insert—

16L Interpretation of sections 16E to 16K

35In sections 16E to 16K—

  • “reviewer” has the meaning given by section 16F(7);

  • “safeguarding partner”, in relation to a local authority area, has
    the meaning given by section 16E(3);

  • “serious child safeguarding cases” has the meaning given by
    40section 16B(9);

  • “relevant agency”, in relation to a local authority area, has the
    meaning given by section 16E(3).”

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Child death reviews

23 Child death reviews

After section 16L of the Children Act 2004 (inserted by section 22 of this Act)
insert—

5“Child death review partners for local authority areas
16M Child death reviews

(1) The child death review partners for a local authority area in England
must make arrangements—

(a) for the review of each death of a child normally resident in the
10area;

(b) for the analysis of information about such deaths generally.

(2) The purposes of a review or analysis under subsection (1) are—

(a) to identify any matters relating to the death, or the deaths
generally, that are relevant to the welfare of children in the area
15or to public health and safety, and

(b) to consider whether it would be appropriate for anyone to take
action in relation to any matters identified.

(3) Where the child death review partners consider that it would be
appropriate for a person to take action as mentioned in subsection
20(2)(b), they must inform that person.

(4) The child death review partners for a local authority area in England
must, at such intervals as they consider appropriate, prepare and
publish a report on—

(a) what they have done as a result of the arrangements under this
25section, and

(b) how effective the arrangements have been in practice.”

24 Information

After section 16M of the Children Act 2004 (inserted by section 23 of this Act)
insert—

16N 30Information

(1) Any of the child death review partners for a local authority area in
England may, for the purpose of enabling or assisting the performance
of functions conferred by section 16M, request a person or body to
provide information specified in the request to—

(a) 35the child death review partner or any other child death review
partner for the area, or

(b) another person or body.

(2) The person or body to whom a request under this section is made must
comply with the request.

(3) 40The child death review partner that made the request may enforce the
duty under subsection (2) against the person or body by making an
application to the High Court or the county court for an injunction.

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(4) The information may be used by the person or body to whom it is
provided only for the purpose mentioned in subsection (1).”

25 Funding

After section 16N of the Children Act 2004 (inserted by section 24 of this Act)
5insert—

16O Funding

(1) The child death review partners for a local authority area in England
may make payments towards expenditure incurred in connection with
arrangements under section 16M—

(a) 10by making payments directly, or

(b) by contributing to a fund out of which payments may be made.

(2) The child death review partners for a local authority area in England
may provide staff, goods, services, accommodation or other resources
to any person for purposes connected with arrangements under section
1516M.”

26 Combining child death review partner areas and delegating functions

After section 16O of the Children Act 2004 (inserted by section 25 of this Act)
insert—

16P Combining child death review partner areas and delegating functions

(1) 20The child death review partners for two or more local authority areas
in England may agree that their areas are to be treated as a single area
for the purposes of sections 16M to 16O and subsections (3) and (4) of
this section.

(2) References in sections 16M to 16O and in subsections (3) and (4) of this
25section to a local authority area are to be read in accordance with any
agreement under subsection (1).

(3) Where a local authority is a child death review partner for the same
local authority area as another local authority (as a result of an
agreement under subsection (1)), the authorities may arrange for one of
30them to carry out functions under sections 16M to 16O on behalf of the
other.

(4) Where a clinical commissioning group is a child death review partner
for the same local authority area as another clinical commissioning
group, the groups may arrange for one of them to carry out functions
35under sections 16M to 16O on behalf of the other.”

27 Guidance and interpretation

After section 16P of the Children Act 2004 (inserted by section 26 of this Act)
insert—

16Q Guidance and interpretation

(1) 40The child death review partners for a local authority area in England
must have regard to any guidance given by the Secretary of State in
connection with functions conferred on them by sections 16M to 16P.