COUNCILLORS have questioned whether youngsters on the child protection register are left all alone once taken off the list.
Members of the social and health care overview and scrutiny committee queried the stance of Flintshire Council’s safeguarding and child protection unit over what measures were in place to ensure children stay safe even after intervention has ended.
Cllr Stella Jones said: “What checks are made to make sure things don’t get worse again for these youngsters once they are taken off the register?”
Council officer Liz Roberts assured children were not just set adrift.
She said: “When a child is deregistered their file stays open for a period of time until we’re certain things have been resolved.
“Ultimately it will be closed if we have a happy ending intervention and we don’t have a higher level of
re-referral than anywhere else in Wales.”
A report by Neil Ayling, Flintshire Council’s director of community services, on the figures for September 30 2011 to October 1 2012 stated that up until October 2011 there had been a steady decline in the number of youngsters added to the child protection register.
But in March 2012 the figure shot up from 74 to 95, an increase of 22 per cent.
However, this was attributed to the team receiving several referrals for families where there were a number of children and the numbers evened out again shortly afterwards.
Of the children on the register on September 30, 30 per cent were suffering physical harm, 29 per cent were experiencing neglect, 26 per cent were being emotionally abused and 13 per cent were facing sexual harm.
Mr Ayling explained: “The significant numbers of emotional harm are often due to the impact of living within a home where domestic violence or abuse is a factor, although it is acknowledged that all forms of abuse against children will include an element of emotional abuse.”
Chairman of the committee Cllr Carol Ellis said councillors and officers alike should make it clear that they can approach them with any concerns.