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At what point do you report concerns to social services.

(46 Posts)
concernedfellowmum Mon 01-Apr-19 18:04:05

Just that really.

Something is playing on my mind. A mum I know of (through neighbours, and see her around from time to time), is very clearly on drugs. She has always been an angry person, shouts a lot at her two children and you can always here her ranting at them in the street.

But lately she is very clearly off her face on drugs. Do I report this. And to who? Would the school have picked up on this?

I don't want to cause any upset but the woman is clearly using and the children are in her care.

Duchessgummybuns Mon 01-Apr-19 18:05:34

NSPCC is a good place to start, you can do it anonymously. And yes you should report if things are as you say, why wouldn’t you?

Neverender Mon 01-Apr-19 18:09:23

I'd probably call the non emergency police number to be honest

NCKitten Mon 01-Apr-19 18:09:30

If you know which school her children go to I'd contact their safeguarding team. It's quite probable she is already on their radar, and if not, they need to know. If they feel they can't do anything they should still be able to tell you what to do. Alternatively you could get in touch with your local multi action safeguarding hub (MASH) and/ or social services, but I'm not really sure how that would work.

You're doing the right thing flowers

SnuggyBuggy Mon 01-Apr-19 18:09:58

I'd report this

Neverender Mon 01-Apr-19 18:10:09

If she's "off her face" there probably needs to be an intervention sooner rather than later.

gottastopeatingchocolate Mon 01-Apr-19 18:10:28

Yes, I would.
Look on your council's web site for the number to call if you have concerns for a child - ours is MARU - Multi Agency Referral Unit.

Or the school safeguarding officer if you prefer.

Neverender Mon 01-Apr-19 18:12:21

I wouldn't leave it another night. You never know what's going on at home and how bad things are.

Jackshouse Mon 01-Apr-19 18:14:12

You report it as soon as you start to think it could potentially be something that needs reporting. Every child protection training session I have been to emphasis this. You don’t need to make a decision about if it needs investigating, that’s the job for someone with lots of training and experience in this and who has all the information. If in doubt then report.

LakieLady Mon 01-Apr-19 18:15:27

I'd report that. Ring your council (county council , if in a two-tier local government area) and say you want to report a child safeguarding concern.

concernedfellowmum Mon 01-Apr-19 18:18:46

To the poster who asked why I wouldn't report.... well to be honest there are a few (maybe silly) reasons.

One is the fact that I've read to many Jaqueline Wilson books. One sticks out in my mind of how one child desperately wanted to stay with her mum and social services got involved and took the girl away. Now I KNOW this is silly, it's a book, and this is real life.
But I worry that this is a blip and I could be the reason why these children could get taken from their mum. And how maybe it could make her/the situation worse?

At the same time I can't stop thinking about it, and thinking how bad it must be to live with, if I was horrified just seeing her in the street.

It's so upsetting. I know what I need to do.

Dilligaf81 Mon 01-Apr-19 18:19:37

Call your local children's social services. I've done this and they do follow up.
The lady I reported ended up having her children permanently removed in the end after much help. Trust your gut.

Jackshouse Mon 01-Apr-19 18:22:22

The threshold to remove children is ridiculously high. Long term Research into the outcomes of children on the old ‘child in need plan’ found that children who were removed from their parents have better outcomes in term of physical and mental health and educational outcomes. You would be surprised by what is considered acceptable by the courts before removing a child. The aim of Ss is to support parents to be good enough not to remove them.

sleepylittlebunnies Mon 01-Apr-19 18:28:14

Yes I would report. Assuming school are aware or that someone else will do it is risky for the children. Contact NSPCC or your local social services, you are only informing of a concern not making further decisions.

concernedfellowmum Mon 01-Apr-19 18:28:25

I will report it. But do you think there's a chance others may have reported too eg school. It's very clear to me she's on drugs so surely the school would have noticed?

If their aim is to keep children with their parents, is there a chance she could be being monitored while stumbling round (literally) on something. I thought something like that would be instant removal.

It's so sad. There is other family members. Why havnt they taken these children to live with them. sad

Duchessgummybuns Mon 01-Apr-19 18:37:09

It’s possible she’s already on the Local Authority radar but you can’t rely on that, sounds like she needs more help than she’s currently receiving.

Neverender Mon 01-Apr-19 18:38:19

You don't know if they're already getting support. You don't know if other family members have tried to support. You don't know any of the details. You don't know if they will be taken out of her care and put somewhere safer - and that's for someone else to look into. Raise your concerns, and raise them quickly, then leave it to the professionals.

BorsetshireBlew Mon 01-Apr-19 18:38:43

You have no idea what's going on so just report it for goodness sake

nokidshere Mon 01-Apr-19 18:38:49

To the poster who asked why I wouldn't report.... well to be honest there are a few (maybe silly) reasons.

One is the fact that I've read to many Jaqueline Wilson books. One sticks out in my mind of how one child desperately wanted to stay with her mum and social services got involved and took the girl away. Now I KNOW this is silly, it's a book, and this is real life.

Most children want to stay with their parents, regardless of how badly they are treated. That doesn't mean they should or that it's the best thing for them. And yes, completely silly to even think about the book.

But I worry that this is a blip and I could be the reason why these children could get taken from their mum. And how maybe it could make her/the situation worse?

So maybe she will stop taking drugs in a few weeks? And until then her children should just suck it up and wait for her to stop?

At the same time I can't stop thinking about it, and thinking how bad it must be to live with, if I was horrified just seeing her in the street.

Horrified is a strong word. If you are horrified seeing her then you should not be hesitating to report her.

It's so upsetting. I know what I need to do

Then do it. Stop procrastinating and call the Local Safeguarding team. Do it right now. Could you live with yourself if something happened and you had ignored it? You aren't going to do anything to those children except tell someone who might be able to help them. Being upset isn't enough.

nokidshere Mon 01-Apr-19 18:41:38

If their aim is to keep children with their parents, is there a chance she could be being monitored while stumbling round (literally) on something. I thought something like that would be instant removal.

It's not your business what they do after you have told them. Just report and leave it to the professionals.

It's so sad. There is other family members. Why havnt they taken these children to live with them.

Again, soo many reasons. It's not something you need to concern yourself with. Just call.

Samind Mon 01-Apr-19 18:42:15

I wouldn't hesitate or count on others having reported it OP. Things could be really bad for these children at home.

BlueEyedBengal Mon 01-Apr-19 18:47:11

You may think that someone else has probably reported this but just maybe they haven't and these children remain in a dangerous situation with someone who can't look after herself let alone kids. Please report as the children safety should be of upmost importance. Addicts if that what she is will be putting her needs before anything her children need even the basics. So again please report.

Thirtyrock39 Mon 01-Apr-19 18:48:39

Contact your local social services child safeguarding team. It's always better if it's first hand accounts rather than telling the school.
I've done this recently on a concern that was vaguely similar to what you describe and was asked a lot of questions that wouldn't have been asked if I was to have just told school. Social services will decide whether they need to act on it
You can be anonymous as well

OMGIwonacar Mon 01-Apr-19 18:51:37

She might present differently at school etc or might have someone else doing pick ups.

You see the home environment as closely as possible without being in the house.

Report to Councils Children's services either online tonight or by phone tomorrow.

You can do this anon if you must but it's more helpful to give contact details so they can check anything with you. Bear in mind if it goes to court all info given including your name will be given to her solicitor to go through. Don't let this put you off. If the children are at risk you must report.

Jackshouse Mon 01-Apr-19 18:56:11

Time and time again there have been deaths and probably other serious incidents that have not been reported in the media to protect the identities of children when professionals and others have failed to act. As an adult it is moral duty to protest that child. All you have to do is make one simple phone call.

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