Responses to a Government consultation on changes to statutory guidance on safeguarding children were generally positive the Department for Education has announced. The Government will now update and replace the current statutory guidance, Working Together to Safeguard Children 2015.
The consultation sought sector input on the proposed changes to Working Together to Safeguard Children, new child death review guidance and new regulations. It ran from 25 October to 31 December 2017.
The consultation attracted 703 responses from a wide variety of interested stakeholders, including representatives from local authorities, health sector bodies, police, youth justice, voluntary and community organisations, social care professionals, safeguarding boards and educational establishments.
Most proposals in the consultation were accepted by a significant majority of respondents.
The Government will review the guidance and statutory instruments in accordance with the findings of the consultation, and the statutory instruments will be debated and voted on by both Houses of Parliament in spring 2018.
Following commencement of the relevant provisions of the Children and Social Work Act 2017, an updated version of Working Together to Safeguard Children will be published, and the new safeguarding arrangements will come into effect.
Local areas will have 12 months from the date of commencement to develop and publish their arrangements, and a further three months to implement them in full.