Information on child protection responsibilities for those who deliver child services is available by viewing the Angus Interagency Guidelines for Child Protection and the National Guidance for Child Protection in Scotland.
Your role as a childminder is to listen, observe, record and report.
Child protection concerns can come to light in various ways:
- directly from the child
- from a parent or family member
- from a family friend or member of the public
- from something you have witnessed such as interactions with adults; concerning behaviour from the child; adults who are intoxicated
- from something you have seen on the child such as marks or bruising.
If you have a child protection concern you must report this immediately by:
- sharing the concern directly with the child's social worker if they have one
- If the child does not have a social worker, or you are not sure, report the concern to the care and protection service on 0345 277 7778 (Option 1).
- You may wish to discuss with the child's named person. However always be mindful of the need for promptness. It is important that you are aware of the child’s GP surgery/primary school as this will allow you to identify the named person who are usually:
- health visitor for pre-school children
- primary school head teacher or promoted member of staff for primary school age children
The seven golden rules to sharing information are:
- Remember that the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), Data Protection Act 2018 and human rights law are not barriers to justified information sharing, but provide a framework to ensure that personal information about living individuals is shared appropriately.
- Be open and honest with the individual (and/or their family where appropriate) from the outset about why, what, how and with whom information will, or could be shared, and seek their agreement, unless it is unsafe or inappropriate to do so.
- Seek advice from other practitioners, or your information governance lead, if you are in any doubt about sharing the information concerned, without disclosing the identity of the individual where possible.
- Where possible, share information with consent, and where possible, respect the wishes of those who do not consent to having their information shared. Under the GDPR and Data Protection Act 2018 you may share information without consent if, in your judgement, there is a lawful basis to do so, such as where safety may be at risk. You will need to base your judgement on the facts of the case. When you are sharing or requesting personal information from someone, be clear of the basis upon which you are doing so. Where you do not have consent, be mindful that an individual might not expect information to be shared.
- Consider safety and well-being: base your information sharing decisions on considerations of the safety and well-being of the individual and others who may be affected by their actions.
- Necessary, proportionate, relevant, adequate, accurate, timely and secure: ensure that the information you share is necessary for the purpose for which you are sharing it, is shared only with those individuals who need to have it, is accurate and up-to-date, is shared in a timely fashion, and is shared securely.
- Keep a record of your decision and the reasons for it – whether it is to share information or not. If you decide to share, then record what you have shared, with whom and for what purpose.