Neglect Practitioner Portal – Guidance on neglect

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Neglect is the persistent failure to meet a child’s basic physical and/or psychological needs, likely to result in the serious impairment of the child’s health or development (Working Together to Safeguard Children – 2015)

In Oxfordshire, neglect is the most common reason for children becoming subject to a child protection plan or repeat plan and is a common feature in the county’s recent serious case reviews. It is difficult to define and often coexists with other forms of abuse. Apart from being potentially fatal, neglect causes great distress to children and affects their well-being in the short and long term.

What families tell us they want:

  • Simple, jargon-free explanations, clarity and honesty
  • To be listened to and for professionals to act on what’s important to the child
  • Positives to be identified, shared and built on
  • Practical help and advice
  • For professionals to play with the children and spend 1:1 time with them
  • To have family needs at the heart of our work
  • For abrupt endings and new beginnings with workers to be minimised, as these make a difficult situation worse

Neglect Practice Guidance

This twelve-page document includes standard practice guidance alongside sections on disabled children, ‘one child singled out’ and neglect by secondary carers.

Neglect Pathway

The Oxfordshire Neglect Pathway and Identification and Intervention Overview is a two-page document that provides an overview of available resources and support to identify and address neglect.

Disabled Children

Research evidence indicates that disabled children are more likely to suffer neglect than their peers but that they are less likely to be subject to Child Protection Plans under the category of neglect. More information, including nine factors to look out for in disability cases, and contact details for the Children’s Disability Teams, can be found on page four of the Neglect Practice Guidance.

When working with disabled children, practitioners should ask: would this situation be acceptable if the child was not disabled?

This nine-page document describes the referral process for disabled children.

N.B. Where disability, mental health or other needs are present in adults within the family, you can access support from named professionals in Adult Services.

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