Concerned about a child or young person

 

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If you have a concern that a child is vulnerable or at risk of significant harm please contact the Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub in York.

The MASH is a multi-agency team made up of representatives from a range of services, including Social Care, Early Help, Police and Health Professionals and is a single point of contact for all concerns about children. This partnership approach will make it easier to get children, young people and families to get the right level of support as quickly as possible.

Phone: 01904 551900

Email: MASH@york.gov.uk

Post: MASH, West Offices, Station Rise, York, YO1 6GA

Outside office hours, at weekends and on public holidays contact the emergency duty team telephone: 01609 780780

If you are a member of the public contacting about your own family or a family you know, you can contact the MASH via the telephone number or email address above.

When contacting by telephone, you will be presented with 3 options:

Option 1 – If you have an allocated social worker, or know the name of the social worker you want to speak to, please press 1.

Option 2 – If you would like to find out ways that you can access help for your own family, or if you would like advice about how to support a family you are working with, please press 2 to speak to Early Help.

Option 3 - If you have a safeguarding concern about a child and would like to speak to a social worker, please press 3.

If you are a professional working with a family and need to make a referral to the MASH, please complete the MASH Referral Form and send to MASH@york.gov.uk

If the family have been supported by a FEHA, please also provide a copy of this with the referral form including the reviews and action plans, evidencing that the support has affected no change. The Social Worker can then review this as part of their initial assessment process.

Where you feel the family needs can be supported at an early help level, you can speak with a MASH Early Help Coordinator who can provide advice and support about early help assessments, processes and interventions.

For more information about how the MASH Early Help Coordinators can support, please visit the YorOK Early Help and Local Area Teams webpage.

If making a referral for early help support please submit the MASH Referral Form to earlyhelp@york.gov.uk

The MASH need you to use this form because you are best placed to provide the information that they must have to make a timely, proportionate and effective decision about what help and support the child and their parents or carers need.

Children’s Social Care will accept telephone referrals where there is an immediate risk to a child but when they do so, you will be asked to complete the referral form within 24 hours with written information confirming that provided by telephone. If you are phoning in a referral, it will help to have the referral form in front of you to act as a guide for the information you will be asked to provide by the Social Worker.

If you are uncertain about your concerns, you can call the MASH to have a conversation with a MASH Social Worker or Early Help Coordinator. However you should first speak to the child protection lead in your agency

The MASH and wider children’s services use various tools to identify the most appropriate level of support. One of these tools will be the Levels of Need descriptors, within the CYSCP Threshold Document . When working with a child/young person/family you should use this to help identify the most appropriate support for them.

The best way to address a concern is through conversation with the family (as long as this does not increase the risk for the child or anyone else) and with the other practitioners involved.

Individual situations can be multifaceted and cannot necessarily be addressed via a simple checklist approach. Children and young people may require interventions at several levels. This means that a child may have interventions from a variety of services from universal services to services to manage very complex needs, all at the same time. This means sharing responsibility rather than discharging it up or down the ‘thresholds’ to a different service.

Communication and collaboration between practitioners, at all levels, and with the child and family are the best way to understand the child’s needs and to ascertain when those needs are not being met and when some other intervention is needed to improve outcomes. These communications lead to meaningful assessment and inform ongoing support, planning and review.

Sometimes practitioners (and families) may not agree with each other. In such instances practitioners should seek support from their line manager, or agency child protection lead and, failing a satisfactory outcome to further discussions at this level, may implement the resolution of disputes process.

All communications, assessments, plans and reviews, whatever the outcome, should be recorded appropriately by all agencies in order to show that they took place, identify what was agreed and evaluate how effectively needs were met.

 If you have a concern or allegation about a professional (including volunteers) who works with children and young people and the way they have behaved towards a child, please go to the page giving details of how to contact the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO)

The North Yorkshire and City of York Partnership Information Sharing Form can be used if you think you have information to share with the police about situations in which children, young people or adults may be vulnerable to exploitation. If someone is at risk of immediate harm you need to call 999.

Forms can be found on our Documents and Forms webpage

Screening Tools can be found on our Tools webpage