Safeguarding services in Norfolk have been judged “inadequate” by Ofsted.

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The county council says it is now taking immediate action to improve its services following the inspection of its arrangements for the protection of children.

The Ofsted report makes a series of recommendation for immediate action, including ensuring that all child protection inquiries are carried out by a qualified social worker.

It said: “The delivery of arrangements for the protection of children in Norfolk is inconsistent and patchy. While some examples were seen by inspectors of effective intervention, there are too many cases where practice is very

poor.

“As a result, the council and its partners cannot be confident that all eligible children have been identified, their needs appropriately assessed and plans put in place for their protection.”

Lisa Christensen, Director of Children’s Services at the County Council, said: “This is not good enough for Norfolk children and families, and we are determined to do more, and faster to improve our service.

“Our prime concern is, and will always be, the protection, health and well being of Norfolk children and young people. Inspectors have given us some very clear messages about how we must improve our safeguarding service across the board and we will rise to the challenge they have set us.”

Alison Thomas, Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, said: “This judgement is very disappointing, and clearly there are a number of operational issues that need to be addressed.”

For a full report and reaction see tomorrow’s papers.

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