Allegations against staff and volunteers who work with children

Allegations against staff or volunteers who work with children are overseen by the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO).

The named LADO for Wandsworth is Chantèl Langenhoven.

Make a referral

Read an overview of the LADO procedure.

If you receive an allegation about a member of staff or volunteer, you must complete the referral form within 24 hours of receiving the allegation.

Send the completed form to MASH@wandsworth.gov.uk and cc LADO@wandsworth.gov.uk.

Contact the LADO on 020 8871 7440 to ensure the referral has been received and to discuss next steps.

If an allegation is made against you

Read the LADO Guide for Staff for an overview on what to expect if someone makes an allegation against you.

LADO's role and responsibilities

Despite all agencies making efforts to ensure safer recruitment is followed, there will be occasions when allegations are made against staff or volunteers working with children. The majority of allegations against staff and volunteers relate to their behaviour in the workplace. However some concerns may relate to their personal life or the care of their own children. In some cases there may have been an allegation of abuse against someone closely associated with them and this person may pose a risk of harm to the children the staff or volunteer is responsible for. All organisations employing staff or volunteers working with children should therefore have clear and accessible policies and procedures, which explain what should happen when allegations or concerns about the behaviour of a member of staff or volunteer are raised.

Each organisation is required to have an identified senior member of staff (designated safeguarding lead), who is responsible for managing any allegations which are reported. It is the responsibility of this person to report allegations to and continue to liaise with the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) who has the responsibility to manage and have oversight of allegations against staff or volunteers who work with children.

Statutory guidance (Working Together to Safeguard Children, London Child Protection Procedures (Chapter 7) and Keeping Children Safe in Education), places a clear responsibility on organisations to report to the LADO where it is alleged that a member of staff or volunteer who works with a child has:

  • Behaved in a way that has harmed a child, or may have harmed a child
  • Possibly committed a criminal offence against or related to a child
  • Behaved towards a child or children in a way that indicates that they may pose a risk of harm to children

The LADO’s key role is to:

  • Provide advice/guidance to employers or voluntary organisations
  • Liaise with the police and other agencies, including Ofsted and professional bodies such as the General Medical Council
  • Monitor the progress of referrals to ensure they are dealt with as quickly as possible, consistent with a thorough and fair process
  • Provide oversight of the investigative process through to its conclusion
  • Chair Allegations Against Staff and Volunteers (ASV) Meetings (previously known as Strategy Meetings) and establish an agreed outcome of the LADO process. Often referrals do not result in ASV meetings but instead the LADO provides advice and support in relation to immediate safeguarding measures, the investigation, the disciplinary process if required, changes needed to safeguarding policies and procedures or training needs.
  • Seek to resolve any inter-agency issues
  • Liaise with other LADOs where there are cross boundary issues
  • Collect strategic data and maintain a confidential database in relation to allegations
  • Disseminate learning from LADO enquiries through the children's workforce

Consultation service

A consultation service is available, so if you are uncertain whether a referral should be made or if you want advice, contact the LADO for a case discussion. All consultations will be followed up in writing for your record.

Contact

Chantèl Langenhoven

Telephone: 020 8871 7440
Email: LADO@wandsworth.gov.uk