Twenty Fifth Report Contents

Instruments of interest

Draft Child Safeguarding Practice Review and Relevant Agency (England) Regulations 2018

45.These draft Regulations have been laid by the Department for Education (DfE) together with an Explanatory Memorandum. The draft Regulations relate to reviews of serious child safeguarding cases where children have died or been seriously harmed, and abuse or neglect is known or suspected by a local authority or another person exercising functions in relation to children. The purpose of such reviews is to identify learning on how children can be better protected. The draft Regulations cover national reviews, commissioned and supervised by the Child Safeguarding Practice Review Panel (“the Panel”), and local reviews, commissioned and supervised by local safeguarding partners (local authorities, clinical commissioning groups and chief officers of police). The draft Regulations specify criteria which the Panel and local safeguarding partners must take into account when they commission reviews. These criteria include cases that: highlight recurrent themes or the need for improvements in the safeguarding of children; raise issues which require changes to the law or national guidance; or highlight concerns about the way local agencies are working together. The draft Regulations also make provisions for the procedure for reviews; the appointment (and removal) of reviewers both nationally and locally; and for the content and publication of reports. The draft Regulations also specify the agencies with whom local safeguarding partners may choose to work. The intention of the proposed changes is to support the consistency and clarity of decision making by the Panel and local safeguarding partners and to improve both the standard of reviewers and the quality of reviews.

46.DfE consulted on the proposed changes and revised statutory guidance between October and December 2017. More than 1,100 people responded or attended nine regional public consultation events. DfE explains that there was broad support for the proposals. Some changes have been made in response to the feedback received, including adding religious organisations and organisations providing or supervising sport activities to the list of relevant agencies with whom safeguarding partners may work.

Draft Employment Rights Act 1996 (NHS Recruitment - Protected Disclosure) Regulations 2018

47.These draft Regulations have been laid by the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC). They prohibit discrimination by NHS employers, such as NHS trusts, Clinical Commissioning Groups, special health authorities, the Care Quality Commission or Monitor, against job applicants who have ‘blown the whistle’ during previous employment in the NHS. The draft Regulations implement a key recommendation from Sir Robert Francis’ QC review of whistleblowing (“Freedom to Speak Up”) in 2015 that the Government should introduce protection from discrimination for whistle blowers who are seeking new NHS employment.11 The draft Regulations give job applicants the right to complain to an employment tribunal if they think that they have been discriminated against, set a timeframe of three months during which such a complaint must be made and set out the remedies and the amount of compensation which the tribunal may award if a complaint is upheld. Under the draft Regulations, job applicants would be required to submit their claim to the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) before taking their case to the employment tribunal, so that early conciliation can be attempted. The draft Regulations also introduce an additional protection by making discrimination actionable as a breach of statutory duty, enabling the job applicant to take a case to court. The draft regulations make clear, however, that a job applicant cannot complain to a tribunal and bring an action to court for the same conduct, except for the purpose of restraining or preventing discriminatory conduct by the employer. DHSC’s consultation on the draft Regulations showed broad support, with a majority of responses (71% of the total of 45 responses received) agreeing with the proposals. DHSC estimates that around 20 cases per year will be brought before the employment tribunal and a further two cases will go to court for breach of statutory duty.

Draft Licensing Act 2003 (Royal Wedding Licensing Hours) Order 2018

48.As is customary with such events, the Home Office is planning to extend licensing hours on the weekend of the Royal Wedding on 19 May 2018. This draft Order enables pubs and other licensed premises (but not supermarkets and off-licenses) to sell alcohol for an extra two hours until 1.00 am on both Saturday 19 May and Sunday 20 May. Although the FA Cup Final will be played on the same day, the Home Office states that, based on its previous experience, the risk of additional crime and disorder is minimal.

11 Freedom to Speak Up, Report, 11 February 2015: [accessed 18 April 2018]

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