Paula Burton, Housing Solutions Manager
presented an annual update on the Protecting Vulnerable People work
that had taken place over the last year.
b. advised that over the last 18 months the City of Lincoln Councils Internal Safeguarding meeting had been rebranded as ‘Protecting Vulnerable People’ and had been expanded to encompass Hate/Mate Crime, PREVENT, Domestic Abuse, Stalking and Modern Day Slavery.
c. referred to paragraph 4.1 of the report and advised that the work of the Protecting Vulnerable People group had focussed on the training of staff and ensuring that reports were centrally stored and auditable.
d. advised that a county wide Safeguarding Policy was agreed at Executive in October 2019 which would ensure that over the coming year all district councils would start to operate in a more consistent way.
e. advised that the Council had signed up to the Modern Day Slavery Charter which ensured that the Council’s procurement chain was free from modern day slavery.
f. advised that the Council had contributed towards the Modern Day Slavery review into a major operation and the report would be published once it had been approved by the Home Office.
g. referred to paragraph 4.5 of the report and highlighted the number of referrals that had been made over the last 18months and advised that the increased numbers were thought to be mainly due to staff being more aware of the signs to look out for and that staff were being encouraged to identify cases using an improved process.
h. referred to the work in progress as detailed at paragraph 5 of the report and highlighted the following:
· A Safeguarding information page would be published on City People.
· Lincolnshire Safeguarding Children and Adults training pathway which included online and face to face training.
· Members had attended a safeguarding training event and further training events would be held for those Members who could not attend.
· All of the district Councils within Lincolnshire were currently assessing the effectiveness and cost of implementing the Ecins IT system to record all safeguarding concerns and cases.
· Officers continued to attend multi-agency meetings to ensure that the agencies involved were working in a co-ordinated approach.
· A business case was being prepared for the Corporate Management Team regarding the capacity of officers to fulfil the current ongoing requirements of safeguarding.
i. advised that due to the successful training and publicity raising awareness of officers and the public surrounding issues of modern day slavery and exploitation there had been an increase in the number of concerns raised and subsequently cases that required assistance.
j. referred to paragraph 6.2 of the report and highlighted that Lincolnshire County Council were currently reviewing their processes regarding adult safeguarding and how Housing Related Support was determined and allocated and explained the impact that this would have on the City Council.
k. invited members questions and comments.
Question: Were people reluctant to ask for help if they did not have the correct immigration status?
Response: There was not enough information available to know whether this was an area of concern. Most referrals for trafficking came from the Police, and addressing the issue of trafficking would take priority over the immigration mechanism.
Question: Would Members be provided with further updates on the changes that Lincolnshire County Council were proposing to their safeguarding processes.
Response: If there were major changes which impacted on resources etc then it would be brought to Policy Scrutiny Committee.
Question: Referred to the table at paragraph 4.5 of the report and asked how many of the 113 referrals were Officers working on?
Response: It varied, there was a lot to of pressure on Tenancy Services staff to take a lead on cases. Also, the table did not include trafficking, and domestic abuse or domestic violence cases.
Comment: Members would like to recommend to officers that more resources needed to be provided for safeguarding.
Response: Corporate Management Team were aware and were looking at resources to support safeguarding.
Question: Would members be receiving regular updates on this in the future?
Response: Yes an update report could be presented to Policy Scrutiny Committee.
1. The contents of the report be noted
2. The committee recommended that more resources be made available to support safeguarding.