Specific risks in Child protection

Specific Risks

If you work with children or parents, it’s important to be alert to a range of situations that can have an adverse impact on children and their wellbeing.

Some of these like domestic abuse or alcohol or drug misuse are quite frequently causes for concern. Workers may be less familiar with issues such as forced marriage or child trafficking and guidance is available to ensure you recognise warning signs and know what to do.

Working with Resistant and Challenging Behaviour

The nature of child protection work can at times result in parents and carers feeling angry, confused and upset and they can react in a challenging way towards professionals who are involved with their family. Evidence shows that some adults will deliberately evade practitioners interventions aimed at protecting a child. In many cases of child abuse and neglect, this is a clear and deliberate strategy adopted by one or more of the parent / carer (s) of a child or young person. Agencies should have in place day to day procedures and protocols including practical measures to promote the safety of staff who have direct contact with families. This should include a process for staff to have the opportunity for de-briefing after any incidents.

The North & South Lanarkshire Working with Resistance and Challenging Families Multi-Agency Guidance has been produced to assist and support practitioners and managers working across all agencies within Lanarkshire in dealing with resistant and challenging families, including those who are hostile when a child is subject to child protection concerns or registration. The guidance will help practitioners and managers identify, record and report resistant behaviours, and how this can impact on the child, young person and their family as well as professionals supporting them.

The National Guidance for Child Protection in Scotland Part 4 also provides a good overview of specific circumstances that leave children more vulnerable to abuse and exploitation.