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Munro – one size does not fit all for child protection – what’s the benchmark going to be?

18 May 2011

Professor Munro has published her final report, reviewing child protection. She recommends, amongst other things, that local areas should have freedom to design their own services and that those working in child protection be given more scope to exercise professional judgment.

She has cautioned against cherry picking parts of her report. We deal with an increasing number of professional negligence claims against children’s services departments. One of the criticisms we often see is an assertion that social workers failed to meet timescales fixed in statutory guidance and policy. One of Professor Munro’s recommendations is that local services should be liberated from nationally prescribed ways of working, and should be free to re-design services.

If these reforms are implemented, it will be interesting to see how practice is benchmarked in future claims against social workers.

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