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Children at risk of significant harm

Some children are physically, sexually or emotionally abused. There are others who suffer neglect, which can lead to long-term difficulties through into their adult lives.

Medway Council has a duty under the Children Act 1989  to investigate all situations where there is reasonable cause to suspect that a child is suffering or is likely to suffer harm, so that it can decide what action, if any, it needs to take to protect the child or promote their welfare. It may be that the situation is not thought to be serious enough to need the use of formal procedures and that by providing help and support the child can be protected.

Social workers will work with other professionals carrying out any investigation if it is necessary. The aim is always to try to keep the child within their own family and the council will try to work with the parents and sometimes the extended family, to draw up a plan to keep the family together.

In some cases this may not be possible and the children may be accommodated by the council at the parents’ request. Children can only be removed against the wishes of their parents by a court decision, after considering the views of the children and their parents or very occasionally by the police using their emergency police protection powers.

If you have a concern about a child, please go to the child protection page.

Child protection enquiries and investigations: Information for parents, an information leaflet for parents whose children are subject to child protection concerns, is available on the Medway Safeguarding Children Board (MSCB) website.

For more information about safeguarding children, visit the MSCB website.