The process for reporting safeguarding concerns
Initially, you can report your concern to your Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) via phone or email.
After the intitial discussion, the concern progresses to a stage called Allegations Management, a more formal LADO referral form will need to be completed.
If the Allegations Management threshold is likely to be met, the LADO will schedule an initial ‘Position of Trust’ meeting, to include other relevant professional agencies. Further meetings may also be necessary thereafter, as the investigation progresses, to determine whether there is enough evidence for a substantiated outcome to be reached.
The Initial ‘Position of Trust’ meeting may lead to a criminal investigation by the police, children’s social care, and / or an internal disciplinary investigation by the organisation concerned e.g. regarding Standards of Care or Standards of Conduct issues.
Typically, a meeting would consist of the organisation reporting the matter, Ofsted or similar regulatory organisation, the police, health, social care and the LADO service. Occasionally a decision is made to have a combined strategy meeting with the police and key agencies, especially if there are children at immediate risk, or there are children involved within the accused staff members own family.
The accused staff member would not be invited, or any representative at this stage of the proceedings. In the more complex meetings, a review evaluation meeting may be convened, but often the LADO will email all involved parties to confirm the outcome.
For your written records, the LADO will send you an email detailing the discussion held regarding your concern, together with any advice and guidance they have offered to you.