Safeguarding Children

Keeping children safe in Lewisham

We make sure that, in exercising the ICB’s functions, robust arrangements are in place to safeguard and protect the wellbeing of children and young people. This is required by Section 11 of the Children Act’s 2004.

Our mission is to improve the health and reduce health inequalities of Lewisham people and to provide the highest quality health services on their behalf ensuring good governance and proper stewardship of public resources. Safeguarding underpins everything that NHS South East London ICB does.

The Lewisham Accountable Officer ensures that the responsibility to safeguard and prevention of harm to children, young people and vulnerable adults is discharged effectively across the whole health economy through Lewisham’s partnership arrangements.

Children have a right to grow up safe from harm. It is not acceptable for anyone to treat a child in a way that makes him or her unhappy and will affect how they grow up. We all have a part to play to keeping children safe.

What is child safeguarding?

Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children is defined as:

  • Protecting children from maltreatment;
  • Preventing impairment of children’s health or development;
  • Ensuring that children are growing up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care; and
  • Undertaking that role so as to enable those children to have optimum life chances and to enter adulthood successfully.

The legislation and guidance relevant to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children includes the following:

Children Act 1989 and Children Act 2004

Working Together to  Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018 (publishing.service.gov.uk)

Promoting the Health and Well-being of Looked After Children

Safeguarding children and young people: roles and competences for health care staff

Who are the Lewisham safeguarding children professionals

The Child Safeguarding Children Team is a group of designated doctors, and nurses who place children at the centre of care in the borough by ensuring a child-centred focus to health service provision and development of services.

Designated Safeguarding Professionals ensure that services are maintained, improved and available to children and families across the borough and to ensure that child safeguarding concerns are addressed in a proactive and timely fashion.

 A key component of safeguarding arrangements is provision of professionals safeguarding children training.

Designated Safeguarding Professionals work in collaboration with other statutory agencies.  Liaising with other agencies is both necessary and important to share information with police, social services, and the voluntary sector to protect children.

Who can raise a safeguarding child concern?

Safeguarding concerns may be raised by any person experiencing the alleged abuse, relatives, carers or a member of the public and health, social care staff and ICB staff.

What to do if you are worried about a child suffering from harm?

If you are concerned that a child has suffered harm, neglect or abuse, please contact Lewisham Multi Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) who can discuss this with you. 

The MASH is multi agency and brings together services including, social care, education, health, police, and children centres. The MASH aims to work together to offer the right help at an early stage to families who need support. Contact details below:

During office hours (Monday – Friday):

Lewisham’s MASH  020 8314 6660

Email: mashagency@lewisham.gov.uk

Out of Office hours:

Emergency Duty Team – 020 8314 6000

If a child is at immediate risk of harm, call the Police on 999.