An inspection of services for at risk children in Dundee has identified areas where services should be improved to help properly support children at risk of abuse or neglect.
The joint inspection of the Dundee city council services for at risk young people and children took place between July 12 and November 5, 2021.
It looked at social work, health and education staff, police officers and children’s reporters in the Dundee community planning partnership area.
Inspectors highlighted that recognising and responding to concerns about risk of harm and support for young people was not as effective as it was for younger children.
Resources to support children and young people with mental health or emotional wellbeing issues were limited and staff were not confident that needs were being fully met.
They noted children and young people at risk of harm and their parents were not consistently being supported to give their views in meetings.
Opportunities for children and young people at risk of harm to share views and influence policy and service delivery were limited.
The partnership did not have effective arrangements for systemic review of outcomes data to evidence the difference it was making to the lives of children at risk and their families.
Lead by the care inspectorate the inspection focused on how well services worked together to improve the lives of children and young people at risk of abuse and neglect.
In the inspectors report the key strengths identified were: “most children in Dundee were being kept safe from harm by committed staff who effectively recognised and responded to concerns.
This recognition of response to harm remained as effective as the Covid-19 pandemic progressed.
Children and young people felt safer as a result of the strong relationship they had with key members of staff.
The collaborative approach throughout the partnership had resulted in the effective development and delivery of a range of multi-agency services that helped children at risk and families to receive support.
Senior leaders demonstrated effective and inclusive governance and accountability in their leadership of multi-agency child protection arrangements.
Senior leaders continued to work together to effectively lead and direct staff as the Covid-19 pandemic progressed.
Dundee city council declined to comment but provided a statement from their website: “Protection of our most vulnerable children and young people is an absolute key priority in Dundee.
“We cannot afford to be complacent, and we will use this report to help us shape and improve services for the future.”