Concerns, Complaints and Allegations
From time to time, those working with children and young people can be subject to complaints made by others. This guidance is intended to help Foster Carers understand the way in which complaints will be dealt with. It is also a guide to all those who become involved in complaints against Carers, so that a consistent approach is applied across Devon.
The seriousness of complaints ranges from minor concerns that require informal discussion, to more serious complaints which need formal consideration and action, and up to serious allegations which fall within the Department's multi-agency Child Protection procedures. Accordingly, the outcome of complaints ranges from discussion and advice, to concerns and warnings, and up to de-registration and possible prosecution through the courts.
Those employed or approved to care for other people's children are in a very trusted and responsible position, and all concerned are duty bound to thoroughly consider any complaint made, and to deal with the outcome responsibly.
It is in no-one's interest to 'cover-up' when complaints are raised. The lowest level of intervention required will be used to consider complaints. Where serious allegations are concerned, the Devon County Child Protection Committee is committed to a policy of openness and honesty in relation to Child Protection work, as long as this does not obstruct the Directorate's paramount responsibility, which is to protect children and promote their welfare.
These principles of openness and paramount responsibility to the child's welfare apply to all levels of complaint.