Child protection - 948/14
Dated: 19 Dec 2014
Date of request: 13/11/14
Date of response: 05/12/14
Provision of information held by Northumbria Police made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the 'Act')(FOIA)
Thank you for your email dated 13 November 2014 in which you made a request for access to certain information which may be held by Northumbria Police.
As you may be aware the purpose of the Act is to allow a general right of access to information held by a Public Authority (including the Police), subject to certain limitations and exemptions.
1. Does your Police Force have dedicated units to child protection and/or investigating child abuse?
(a) How many of these units are in place?
(b) What are their responsibilities?
(c) What geographical area to do they cover?
2. Does your Police Force have a lead officer for (a) child protection and (b) sexual exploitation in each borough? If so, what rank is the lead officer?
3. What rank of police officer represents the Force on the Local Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB)?
We have now had the opportunity to fully consider your request and I provide a response for your attention.
Following receipt of your request, searches were conducted with the Crime Department of Northumbria Police. I can confirm that the information you have requested is held by Northumbria Police.
I am able to disclose the located information to you as follows.
a) 2 Child Abuse and Vulnerable Adults Units (CAVA)and a Central Referral Unit (CRU)
b) The CAVA Unit will investigate historic and current allegations of sexual and physical abuse, and neglect, against children under the age of 18 yrs in the following cases:
· Intra familial abuse (as opposed to stranger attack) which includes immediate family members, step / half relatives and members of the extended family;
· Extra-familial abuse where the offence is serious category crime and there are clear safeguarding issues
· Abuse committed by a carer or an employee of the care organisation (e.g. foster carer, or children’s home employee)
· Sexual abuse where both victim and offender are children and exploitation is the determinate factor in offending
· Reports of Sudden Unexplained Death in Infancy (SUDI). In Sudden Unexpected Death in Infancy (SUDI) cases the PVP Child Abuse Investigation (CAI) Detective Inspector will be responsible for the investigation.
· The PVP unit will take responsibility for Force contribution to Local Safeguarding Children’s Boards and appropriate sub-groups including the Serious Case Review sub-group
c) One covers North of the Tyne and one South of the Tyne, within the Northumbria Police force boundary.
2. Northumbria Police does not have a lead officer for (a) child protection and (b) sexual exploitation in each Area Command.
There is an ACPO Lead and a Detective Superintendent Lead for these areas of business, who cover the Northumbria Police force area.
3. A Detective Chief Inspector represents the Force on the LSCB
Due to the different methods of recording information across 43 forces, a specific response from one constabulary should not be seen as an indication of what information could be supplied (within cost) by another. Systems used for recording these figures are not generic, nor are the procedures used locally in capturing the data. For this reason responses between forces may differ, and should not be used for comparative purposes.
The information we have supplied to you is likely to contain intellectual property rights of Northumbria Police. Your use of the information must be strictly in accordance with the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 (as amended) or such other applicable legislation. In particular, you must not re-use this information for any commercial purpose.
How to complain
If you are unhappy with our decision or do not consider that we have handled your request properly and we are unable to resolve this issue informally, you are entitled to make a formal complaint to us underour complaints procedure which can be found at:http://www.northumbria.police.uk/foi/disclosurelog/foicomprights.asp
If you are still unhappy after we have investigated your complaint and reported to you the outcome, you may complain directly to the Information Commissioner’s Office and request that they investigate to ascertain whether we have dealt with your request in accordance with the Act.