Jersey group aims to tackle child cruelty

A new group will mean a faster response to suggestions of child cruelty, according to the head of children's services in Jersey.

The Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (Mash) includes the health and social security departments, police, schools and children's services.

Sean Pontin said: "We already benefit from good multi-agency work.

"Mash will give us a real dedicated partnership, a fast co-ordinated response."

The group, which launches in September, is based on similar schemes in the UK and involves the different agencies working from the same office.

Advice about parenting

Mr Pontin said: "It will allow us to share information among professionals very quickly, we can identify support needs of families and also the best services that can respond to those families.

"At any one point we probably have four or five hundred children we're working with."

He said this included families needing support such as advice about parenting through to child protection issues.

Mr Pontin said as part of the launch the children's service would be rebranded in a move aimed at making it easier for people to report concerns about child cruelty.

An NSPCC spokesman welcomed the group being set up adding the charity would work closely with it in an effort to improve protection for children and young people.

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