LADO (Local Authority Designated Officer)
Allegations against professionals/volunteers who work with children
All allegations about people who work with children, in statutory, independent or voluntary organisations, must be referred to the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO).
A referral to the LADO must be made if there is information about a person indicating they have:
- Behaved in a way that has harmed a child or may have harmed a child;
- Possibly committed an offence against or related to a child;
- Behaved towards a child or children in a way that indicates they may pose a risk of harm to children.
If there is an allegation with regard to someone who works with children about children they care for in another capacity then this potentially has implications for their professional role and must also be referred to the LADO.
Any allegation can require potentially three different enquiries; a police investigation; a child protection enquiry; and a disciplinary enquiry. The LADO will ensure that enquiries are managed appropriately and that information is shared between the police, children's social care and the employer. The LADO will discuss with the employer how the person who the allegation is about will be supported and managed whilst enquiries are being undertaken and how children will be kept safe whilst enquiries are ongoing. If it is evidenced that someone is unsafe to work with children the LADO will ensure required actions have been taken including, when necessary, referring to the Disclosure and Barring Service.
On occasions someone who works with children can behave in a way that causes their colleagues or management anxieties. Such behaviours may include the failure to understand or appreciate how his or her own actions or those of others could adversely impact up on the safety and well-being of a child; inability to make sound professional judgments which safeguard the welfare of children; failure to understand or recognise the need for clear personal and professional boundaries in his or her work; behaved in a way in his or her personal life which could put children at risk of harm; become the subject of criminal proceedings not relating to a child.
Anyone with concerns about a person's suitability to work with children should contact the LADO for advice and guidance.
The LADO for Bury can be contacted via the Safeguarding Unit on Tel 0161-253-6168 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.