Child Protection Guidance 2021

Part 4: Specific support needs and concerns 193 National Guidance for Child Protection in Scotland 2021 Version 1.0 September 2021 Protection in transitional phases 4.354 Meaning. A significant trauma, loss or change in a child’s care, core relationships and services may have a ripple effect, not only for the child, but also for those to whom they feel closest. This interaction informs effective assessment and planning of support during phases in which there may be heightened risks, as well as opportunities for growth. 4.355 Examples of transitional risks and opportunities: • children who have been impacted by abuse or neglect, who are now moving onto adult life and services • children who are impacted by parental health problems, or by drug and alcohol problems, and are now moving onto adult life and services • children with complex disabilities who are moving onto adult life and services. They and their families often experience a sequence of service changes and loss of known professional supports within an age band during which their fundamental health and wellbeing needs may change little • children moving between care placements or moving on from family-based, residential or secure care arrangements. Some of the most emotionally isolated and risky transitional phases may occur several years after the movement between or out of these settings • parents who have lost a child involuntarily through statutory processes. There may be phases of heightened risk and opportunity to engage following such removal. Disengagement by and from services may increase the risk of repeat removal(s) • children in transitional phases who are isolated, separated by the imprisonment of or otherwise removed from those to whom they feel closest, and whose help they need • children in transitional phases within families who find services inaccessible or incomprehensible 4.356 Anticipation and prevention. In and of themselves, such phases do not trigger ‘child protection’ or ‘adult protection’ processes. There may be trigger points or critical moments when a child is excluded, isolated, hurt or afraid, when proactive support can make a long- term difference. Early collaborative planning and sufficient co-ordination and continuity of support are key to effective support through predictable transitions. This Guidance advocates an approach that is rights-based, has a focus on relationships, and seeks to build on resilience. Some areas have developed Young Person Support and Protection Protocols which raise awareness and signpost appropriate processes for children and young adults across a range of concerns, when there is a pattern of escalating concerns. 4.357 Signposts in this Guidance. The legal interface between child and adult protection processes are outlined in Part 1 of this Guidance, under the definitions of ‘child’ and ‘principles in child protection’. In Part 2 the interface between child and adult protection is considered in relation to roles and responsibilities. The components of assessment and planning in Part 2B invite consideration of transitional needs. In relation to specific areas of risk, practitioners should apply evaluated and locally approved frameworks in the use of which they are trained and supervised. Resources and References – Transitional phases