RCN publishes framework for safeguarding children and young people

Press Release 30/01/2019

The Royal College of Nursing (RCN), alongside over 20 health organisations including the Royal College of General Practitioners, Royal College of Anaesthetists and the Institute of Health Visiting, has today published new safeguarding guidance for healthcare staff responsible for the care and protection of children and young people.

Called ‘Safeguarding Children and Young People: Roles and Competencies for Healthcare Staff’ the document provides clear guidance to healthcare professionals on how to protect children and young people in their care and what to do in the event they come to harm.

All staff who come into contact with children and young people have a responsibility to safeguard and promote their welfare and should know what to do if they have concerns about safeguarding and child protection issues.

The latest document has been updated to include changes to legislation and statutory guidance in England and now includes education and learning logs to enable individuals to record their learning and form a ‘passport’ for those who move on to new jobs or other organisations.

Fiona Smith, RCN Professional Lead for Children and Young People’s Nursing said:

“Wherever staff are working they need to be able to recognise when somebody in their care could be at risk and have the right skills and knowledge to take the appropriate action.

“The importance of prevention must also not be overlooked and the guidance in this new document gives those caring for children and young people the vital learning needed to prevent harm as well as what to do should something go wrong.

“The learning draws from research, case studies as well as serious case reviews to give individuals the expertise needed to offer the protection children and young people deserve.

“The guidance also now includes vital information for chief executives and other senior leaders as they ultimately have overall responsibility for child protection and ensuring all their staff have the right skills in place.

 “We know from some high profile cases in the past the consequences of not having the right skills and procedures in place and the aim of this document is to give to give those looking after vulnerable children and young people in our society the knowledge needed to prevent such tragedies from happening again.”


  • The framework document can be downloaded here

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