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DerbyChildren's Social Care Procedures Manual

3.1.3 First Contact Team: Children's Services

SCOPE OF THIS CHAPTER

This chapter describes the process for responding to telephone contacts and referrals; including how social care thresholds are used to assess risk.

RELATED CHAPTER

Derby City Council Reception First Contact Team Flow Chart

First Contact Team - Tel: 01332 641172
ashmail@derby.gov.uk.cjsm.net

What is the 'First Contact Team'?

The First Contact Team deals with all telephone contacts and referrals for Children and Young people across the city who do not have an allocated worker. All contacts are screened by the FCT manager.

The First Contact Team

The team comprises of a Team Manager, Children's Practitioners and a Case Work Support Officer.

Making Referrals

All Contacts and Referrals will be considered against a Social Care threshold to ensure that we process urgent Social Care and safeguarding referrals through to the city wide Reception Teams. Other Contacts will be supported by providing advice, signposting, guidance and support with the completion of an Early Help Assessment (CAF Pre 2014).

The Team Manager for the team will screen all Contacts and Referrals for immediate risks and Social Care response. The manager is also available to offer qualified social work advice to any agency.

Decisions
  • All contacts will be passed to the FCT manager without delay and a decision about a contact received by the Team will be taken immediately if urgent, or within 24 hours;
  • The Team Manager will identify the level of need:
    1. Child Protection (S47);
    2. Child in Need (s17);
    3. Early Help Assessment;
    4. No Further Action.
  • Urgent Safeguarding matters will be dealt with immediately. Referrals of a non urgent nature (children in need) will be allocated to a Social worker on the next working day;
  • The Team Manager will identify which children in the household will be subject of the assessment. The Team Manager will record on the child's file the rationale for the actions taken and clearly identify any immediate hazards and risk issues.
Outcome of Referrals

The team will advise all referrers of the outcome of their contact with the service by telephone or in writing.

Early Help Advisors

Advisors are based within each locality to provide and advise on completing Early Help Assessments. All completed Early Help Assessments will be screened by the Locality Team Managers to ensure there are no immediate safeguarding concerns and then considered in weekly VCM meetings.

Threshold Criteria

See Derby City and Derbyshire Thresholds Document.