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Child Protection and Safeguarding

If you have immediate concerns or are worried about a child or young person's safety please telephone the Multi Agency Referral Unit (MARU) on 0300 123 1116

Multi Agency Referral Unit (MARU)

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The MARU provides a multi-disciplinary response to concerns about the welfare or safety of a child or young person in line with statutory guidance from Our Safeguarding Children Partnership for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

The multi-disciplinary team also provides advice and guidance to parents and professionals about the wide range of services available to children and families in Cornwall.

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The MARU will try to help you by signposting you to the service that can best help meet your child’s needs.  Sometimes they will recommend you speak to the Early Help Hub or pass your concerns to the Early Help Service and they will complete an Early Help assessment.  If you or someone else is concerned about the safety or welfare of your child (ren) then the Children and Families Service will carry out an assessment to consider the most appropriate help.  The assessment gives us an opportunity to talk to you and your child(ren) about any problems and, if appropriate, to plan the right help for you to solve these problems.

Read more about the assessment process

A child protection conference is a meeting arranged by social care to discuss concerns which have been raised about the safety and well being of your child(ren). The social worker will explain the particular reasons for the meeting in your case.

Read more about Child Protection Conferences

You can view the child protection procedures on the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Safeguarding Children Partnership Procedures Manual, which is managed by Our Safeguarding Children Partnership for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.  The procedures provide more details about the nature of child abuse and the legal framework.

There is a statutory requirement under the Children Act 2004 (Section 16E) for the provision of ‘Local arrangements for safeguarding and promoting welfare of children’; for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, this safeguarding partnership is known as Our Safeguarding Children Partnership (OSCP), with the safeguarding partners being:

The partnership brings together representatives from the organisations in the area who help to protect children from abuse and neglect. OSCP is a multi-agency forum to agree how the different agencies and professional groups should co-operate to safeguard children and to provide assurance that those arrangements work effectively to bring about good outcomes for children. 

Visit Our Safeguarding Children Partnership for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly