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EalingChildren's Services Procedures Manual

Initial Contacts, Referrals and Ealing Children's Integrated Response Service (ECIRS)

RELEVANT PROCEDURES AND GUIDANCE

This chapter should be read in conjunction with:

Early Help Framework

Ealing's Assessment Protocol & Thresholds of Need Guide

AMENDMENT

This chapter was reviewed in June 2019 whereby local information was updated.

Contents

  1. Ealing Children's Integrated Response Service
  2. Initial Contacts and Referrals
  3. Processing of Referrals

1. Ealing Children's Integrated Response Service

Ealing Children's Integrated Response Service (ECIRS) is the single point of entry for all referrals into Ealing Children's Services where there are concerns about a child or young person or a family is in need of additional support.

ECIRS is a multi-agency service that includes Social Workers, Family Support workers. Domestic Violence workers and a specialist Health Visitor. Ealing Borough Police Public Protection desk also sits within the team. The ECIRS service works closely with Education, Youth Justice, Probation and other Children's and Adult services.

ECIRS is based in Perceval House and can be contacted on Tel: 020 8825 8000.

General enquiries about services for children and families will continue to be dealt with by Ealing the Contact Centre or Ealing's Family Information Service (FIS).

ECIRS will:

  • Make decisions about the level of need at the first point of contact by assessing the concerns professionals and the public may have about a child/young person in order to make informed decisions about their level of vulnerability;
  • Play a lead role in supporting and promoting information sharing. The service incorporates the Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH), a police led initiative to improve information sharing and risk assessment at the point of referral;
  • Offer advice and information to parents, carers and partner agencies and refer or signpost families to appropriate services including SAFE and parenting support services;
  • Give guidance around the completion of an Early Help Assessments and Plan (see Early Help Framework) and assist in facilitating Team Around the Family meetings where appropriate;
  • Complete all referrals from professionals or families wishing to refer to SAFE services;
  • Undertake some short-term intervention on cases where the level of support needed has not been clearly determined or where immediate intervention may prevent the case from escalating;
  • Work in partnership with other teams and services such as Multi Agency Support Teams (MAST), ESCAN (Ealing Service for Children with Additional Needs), Early Years and Youth Justice Services as well as with partner agencies including Health and Education;
  • Undertake initial work where there are concerns about domestic violence, with a view to helping families to access support earlier;
  • Work with the police to complete investigations where there is an Allegation against Staff or Volunteers (ASV).

2. Initial Contacts and Referrals

All initial contacts and referrals where there is a need for support or where there are specific concerns about the welfare of a child or young person should go to ECIRS.

ECIRS can be contacted by:

Telephone: 020 8825 8000
Email: ECIRS@ealing.gov.uk
Referrals can also be set by fax on 020 8825 5454

In writing to:

Ealing Children's Integrated Response Service (ECIRS)
Perceval House
2nd Floor blue area
14-16 Uxbridge Road
Ealing W5 2HL

A duty worker will be available from 9am to 5pm.

Out of hours referrals can be made on the same number.

3. Processing of Referrals

Referrers to ECIRS will be asked to supply basic information and then be passed to a duty worker where concerns can be discussed

Telephone referrals should be confirmed in writing on the Child and Family Enquiry/Referral Form

Referrers should have obtained consent prior to making a referral unless this would place a child or young person at risk.

N.B. ECIRS is a multi-agency team and families should be informed by the referrer that by giving their consent, they are agreeing to information being shared with relevant agencies.

URGENT CASES

Where it is evident that a child has suffered, or is likely to suffer, significant harm or in need of a high level of support, the case will be referred to one of Ealing's MAST teams who are responsible for child protection and complex children in need cases and will take appropriate action.

NON URGENT CASES

Where a child is in need and the situation has the potential to turn into a safeguarding concern or where there is a safeguarding concern but one that does not warrant immediate action – ECIRS will make a referral to the relevant MAST for a Child and Family Assessment (CFA) and further investigation.

Where it is evident that a child or family is in need of ongoing support (and the threshold for social care intervention is not met), referrals will be completed to the SAFE service. Cases will be referred to SAFE within 10 working days.

The outcome of any referral will be confirmed to the referrer in writing within 24 hours if there are child protection concerns or within seven to ten days for all other concerns.

See also MOSAIC Training Guide.

N.B. If a referrer is unsure as to whether the referral is urgent or non- urgent they can contact ECIRS to discuss over the phone.