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The independent Child Safeguarding Practice Review Panel has been carrying out a review into the safeguarding of children with disabilities and complex health needs in three residential settings in Doncaster. NCB was asked to provide support to the review, and Dame Christine Lenehan was appointed the lead reviewer due to her wealth of expertise in this area.
The first report from the Review, published today, reveals serious failures at the three settings. The report shows a culture of abuse and harm, including evidence of physical abuse and violence, neglect, emotional abuse and sexual harm. The Panel has issued an urgent action to all local authorities to ensure all children with complex needs and disabilities currently living in similar children’s homes are safe and well.
We know these are distressing findings and we understand that this will raise concerns for many parents and carers. Any parent or carer who has concerns about their child should visit the website of the Council for Disabled Children, part of the NCB Family, where they can access information about support.
The first stage of this review comes just one week after the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse released their final report, highlighting institutional failings to keep children safe. The government’s priority must be to assure the many families affected that they have been heard, and that despite the current political turbulence, these reviews will lead to real change.