The Children Act 2004 sets out the duties and responsibilities of each Local Safeguarding Children Board. (LSCB)
This is summarised in Working Together 2015:
Regulation 5 of the Local Safeguarding Children Boards Regulations 2006 sets out that the functions of the LSCB, in relation to the above objectives under section 14 of the Children Act 2004, are as follows:
1(a) developing policies and procedures for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children in the area of the authority, including policies and procedures in relation to:
- (i) the action to be taken where there are concerns about a child’s safety or welfare, including thresholds for intervention;
- (ii) training of persons who work with children or in services affecting the safety and welfare of children;
- (iii) recruitment and supervision of persons who work with children;
- (iv) investigation of allegations concerning persons who work with children;
- (v) safety and welfare of children who are privately fostered;
- (vi) cooperation with neighbouring children’s services authorities and their Board partners;
(b) communicating to persons and bodies in the area of the authority the need to safeguard and promote the welfare of children, raising their awareness of how this can best be done and encouraging them to do so;
(c) monitoring and evaluating the effectiveness of what is done by the authority and their Board partners individually and collectively to safeguard and promote the welfare of children and advising them on ways to improve;
(d) participating in the planning of services for children in the area of the authority; and
(e) undertaking reviews of serious cases and advising the authority and their Board partners on lessons to be learned.
Regulation 5(2) which relates to the LSCB Serious Case Reviews function and regulation 6 which relates to the LSCB Child Death functions are covered in chapter 4 of this guidance.
Regulation 5(3) provides that an LSCB may also engage in any other activity that facilitates, or is conducive to, the achievement of its objectives.
Additional information in each of these key areas can be viewed via the links to the left.
2. In order to fulfil its statutory functions under regulation 5 an LSCB should use data and, as a minimum, should:
- assess the effectiveness of the help being provided to children and families, including early help;
- assess whether LSCB partners are fulfilling their statutory obligations set out in chapter 2 of this guidance;
- quality assure practice, including through joint audits of case files involving practitioners and identifying lessons to be learned; and
- monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of training, including multi-agency training, to safeguard and promote the welfare of children.44,45
Local authorities and Board partners should provide the LSCB with data to enable it to fulfil its statutory functions effectively.
3. LSCBs do not commission or deliver direct frontline services though they may provide training. While LSCBs do not have the power to direct other organisations they do have a role in making clear where improvement is needed. Each Board partner retains its own existing line of accountability for safeguarding.