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Blackpool Children Safeguarding Assurance Partnership Independent Scrutineer

Closing date: Wednesday 20 December 2023 12 midnight

The role

Blackpool Children Safeguarding Assurance Partnership Board (CSAP) is looking for an experienced independent safeguarding scrutineer(s), to ensure our partnership provide assurance that they are delivering the strategic vision and board’s priorities. The role is critical to analyse the effectiveness of the multi-agency arrangements to safeguard and promote the welfare of all children and young people across the town.

Our strategic partnership leaders want to learn about the lived experiences of children, young people and their families, ensuring that they are at the heart of everything we do. We want to ensure our partnership is meeting families’ needs at the earliest stage, that we are working together to safeguard children and young people, and supporting children to remain in loving home with their families wherever possible.

Building on Blackpool’s CSAP governance arrangements, the scrutineer will undertake robust, solution focused and restorative challenge, to improve the quality of partnership practice, so we can ensure that we are all supporting Blackpool’s children and families to experience great future outcomes.

As a ‘critical friend’, they will advocate reflection and promote continuous improvement, and scrutinise if our partnership is embedding a learning culture, enabling our frontline staff and volunteers to implement learning from multi agency quality audits, Local Child Safeguarding Case Reviews (CSPRs), as well as national statutory guidance developments and National CSPR Panel learning. We are seeking a scrutineer who shares our co-produced Blackpool Families Rock values and can play an active role in scrutinising if this restorative and trauma informed culture is being implemented by strategic leaders, throughout their leadership teams and front line practitioner workforce.

The scrutineer will act as a public representative of CSAP, reiterating the importance of safeguarding being everybody’s business, challenging discrimination and promoting diversity. They will ensure voices and experiences of individuals at risk of harm, their families and carers are listened to and acted upon by the partnership leadership governance and their frontline practitioners.

The scrutineer will analyse the impact of the board’s Quality Assurance and Workforce Development Framework, contributing their scrutiny insight of the CSAP board’s efficacy, with evidence based findings and recommendations to inform the CSAP Annual Report.

The role of independent scrutineer requires a resilient individual who is committed to drive forward this fundamental agenda, bringing inspirational and innovative leadership qualities. The role requires significant experience of working at a strategic partnership board level, which evidences the credibility to hold a range of strategic leadership stakeholders to account.

You will be accountable to the 3 strategic leader partners from; Blackpool Council, NHS Lancashire and South Cumbria Integrated Care Board and Lancashire police and will have the support of Blackpool’s Joint Partnership Business Unit and head of service – safeguarding and strategic partnership board to undertake this role.

We welcome applications from individuals with significant leadership experience from a range of partnership disciplines, who can demonstrate our shared values and offer our Blackpool partnership high challenge and support. This role would suit an individual with senior management experience within a public service, social care or health setting.

To maintain the integrity of this appointment, applicants must not have any current affiliation with any of the agencies represented on the partnership and must be able to demonstrate that they can undertake this role independently.

To apply

Please submit your CV and a covering letter of application (of no more than three A4 sides) outlining your suitability, knowledge, skills and experience relevant to the role profile and details of 2 referees to CSAP@Blackpool.gov.uk

Candidates will be shortlisted for interview by the 3 strategic leaders, based on their respective CV's and evidence of experience. Candidates will also spend time with our blackpool parents of the Revolution and our children and young people.

If you have any further queries, please contact Kara Haskayne, Head of Service – Safeguarding Children and Strategic Partnership Boards, by email Kara.Haskayne@Blackpool.gov.uk

Role profile

Role description
Supported by

Head of service – Safeguarding children and strategic partnership board
Blackpool’s Joint Partnership Business Unit

Remuneration

£550 per day

Although you are not a direct employee of the statutory partners, HMRC regulations have defined this role as subject to the intermediary's legislation

Working pattern

It is anticipated that this role will be required to cover approximately 30 days per annum. The specific commitment required will be agreed as part of the appointment process

Location

Blackpool’s Joint Partnership Business Unit are based at Bickerstaffe House, Blackpool, but the post holder will work from home

Travel will be required to fulfil the requirements of the role and meet the functions of CSAP. Associated travel costs to attend Blackpool are included in the daily rate.

Meetings will be either face to face, online or hybrid as determined by business requirements

Contract

Annually renewable subject to three months’ notice by either party

Appraisal

The post will be subject to annual appraisal and review by senior statutory partners

Role purpose

To provide independent, objective scrutiny of the effectiveness of local multi-agency arrangements to safeguard and promote the welfare of all children in Blackpool, including arrangements regarding Child Safeguarding Practice Reviews (CSPRs), assure the partnership implements the board priorities, a quality assurance framework and analyse the impact of the partnership practice on children, young people and their families lived experience and outcomes.

Key responsibilities

  • To provide objective scrutiny, constructive challenge, appreciative inquiry and provide assurance in judging the effectiveness of multi-agency arrangements with a focus on practice
  • Be an independent and objective voice that listens to and represents the views of all safeguarding partners, children and families
  • Consider how effectively safeguarding partners are providing strong leadership and fulfilling their responsibilities with integrity
  • Scrutinise the implementation and impact of the CSAPs Quality Assurance and Workforce Development Framework.
  • Undertake an annual review of the safeguarding partnership arrangements and provide an evidence based scrutineer report to CSAP, elected members scrutiny, chief officers and Blackpool’s Health and Wellbeing Board on progress, highlighting areas which require focus for improvement which will contribute to the CSAP annual report
  • Assessment of activity and desktop review of papers to hold partner organisations accountable for the effective and timely implementation of recommendations identified from scrutiny activities and safeguarding practice reviews.
  • Provide assurance that effective safeguarding performance management, audit and quality assurance mechanisms are in place within single agencies to enable CSAP to fulfil its statutory obligations and measure its impact
  • Support safeguarding partners to identify priorities and content for the business plan
  • Work with Blackpool’s Joint Partnership Business Unit, to interpret performance data, multi-agency quality audit findings, and qualitative feedback from children, young people and their families, as well as Blackpool’s front line practitioner workforce, which demonstrates the impact of the CSAP governance arrangements on children, young people and families’ outcomes.
  • Scrutinise significant child safeguarding issues, ensuring Children Safeguarding Practice Reviews (CSPRs) are undertake in accordance with statutory guidance; review the decision making and rationale of Rapid Response Review Meetings and act as liaison between CSAP and the National Child Safeguarding Practice Review Panel when required
  • In conjunction with the three statutory safeguarding partners, ensure key issues and national developments are fully considered and effectively implemented
  • Meet with wider leadership as required
  • Lead on dispute resolution between partners

Independent scrutineer role specification

Qualifications

Details of qualifications required
 Ref Details
1 Degree level education (or equivalent)
2 A recognised professional qualification in a relevant discipline, including; social care, health, police or education or significant experience at a strategic management level including evidence of CPD / regular professional updates

Knowledege and experience

Details of knowledge and experience requirements
 Ref Details
3 Substantial experience of working at a senior strategic level within an agency which has operational responsibility in the safeguarding children context
4 Extensive knowledge of the safeguarding agenda, including legislation, guidance, policy and partnership regulatory Inspection Frameworks, with a comprehensive understanding of Working Together 2018, current national government guidance / legislation developments and what this means for local partnerships, statutory agencies and voluntary organisations
5 Knowledge of operations of key safeguarding partners and networks
6 Demonstrate the highest degree of legal literacy applicable to safeguarding children and having the ability to connect relevant legal statute with the professional priorities and objectives of multiple partners
7 Experience of working with and within multi-disciplinary strategic partnerships
8 Significant experience of chairing complex professional meetings at a senior and strategic level
9 Extensive experience of developing innovative approaches to assurance, inspection and quality improvement, workforce development and communications in a safeguarding context
10 Experience of presenting and writing high quality reports for a range of audiences
11 Experience of undertaking safeguarding related assurance, inspection or scrutiny 

Skills and abilities

Details of skills and ability requirements
 Ref Description
12 A strong moral and ethical character demonstrating integrity, openness and trustworthiness
13 Ability and enthusiasm for engaging with children, young people and families to ensure their voice and lived experience is at the heart of our safeguarding arrangements
14 Excellent communication and presentation skills to speak with authority on safeguarding issues and engage a wide range of stakeholders and decision makers
15 Demonstrable leadership, influencing skills and professional credibility to enable colleagues, peers and wider partners to contribute to developing a robust and responsive safeguarding environment
16 Ability to empower multi-agency activity for change and improvement
17 Able to digest and analyse complex information and communicate these effectively to a range of audiences
18 The confidence, authority and objectivity to positively influence, challenge practices, hold agencies accountable, manage conflict and professional disagreements