Statement on Joint Targeted Area Inspection (JTAI) of Child Sexual Abuse in the Family Environment (CSAFE)

Cornwall Council has welcomed the findings of a recent Joint Targeted Area Inspection of the multi-agency response in Cornwall to child sexual abuse in the family environment.

Ofsted, the Care Quality Commission (CQC), HMI Constabulary, Fire and Rescue Services (HMICFRS) and HMI Probation (HMIP) undertook a joint inspection in October of the way agencies work together in Cornwall to understand and respond to sexual abuse in the family environment. 

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The inspection, published today,  included an evaluation of the ‘front door’, known in Cornwall as the Multi Agency Referral Unit (MARU), which receives referrals when children and young people may be in need or at risk of harm.

You can read the full report on the Government's website.

The inspectors recognised the strong culture and commitment across agencies to improve practice and learning.  They acknowledged our committed, stable and well trained workforce. 

They stated that the development of a multi-agency Strategy to prevent child sexual abuse sets out areas of development to further improve the identification of children at risk and access to the support available to them.  

The inspectors said that there was clear evidence that agencies had improved learning and understanding from the work to develop the strategy.  Inspectors agreed with the areas for further development.

The inspectors were impressed with the wide range of specialist psychological and therapeutic services available to children who had experienced sexual abuse and the strong commitment shown by schools and the voluntary sector to prevent and respond to sexual abuse. 

They also found that social workers knew their children well and that the wishes of children and young people were clearly captured.

Trevor Doughty, Chair of the One Vision Executive (a multi-agency group that works together to help and protect children and young people, said: “We welcome the report of this joint targeted area inspection. Having this independent, external assessment of the effectiveness of services reaffirms  that services for child and young people who are at risk from, or have suffered from, child sexual abuse in the family environment, is good, and that we understand where we need to improve further the way we work together to prevent, identify and respond to this risk.  We are committed to learning from this inspection.”

Sally Hawken, the Council’s Lead Member for Children and Wellbeing said, “As the Portfolio Holder for children and young people, I welcome the findings of the inspection and I am pleased that inspectors have recognised the commitment, hard work and achievements of dedicated staff across all agencies to reduce the risk of harm to our children and young people in Cornwall. 

“It takes the whole community to keep children safer. If you have concerns that a child may be at risk of sexual abuse or believe that a child is experiencing sexual abuse please contact the MARU.”

View full details of how to contact the MARU.