The initial child protection conference brings together family members, the child who is the subject of the conference (where appropriate) and those professionals most involved with the child and family, following section 47 enquiries. Its purpose is:
- to bring together and analyse, in an inter-agency setting, the information which has been obtained about the child’s developmental needs and the parents’ or carers’ capacity to respond to these needs to ensure the child’s safety and promote the child’s health and development, within the context of their wider family and environment;
- to consider the evidence presented to the conference and taking into account the child’s present situation and information about his or her family history and present and past family functioning, make judgements about the likelihood of the child suffering significant harm in future and decide whether the child is continuing to, or is likely to, suffer significant harm; and
- to decide what future action is required in order to safeguard and promote the welfare of the child, including the child becoming the subject of a child protection plan, what the planned developmental outcomes are for the child and how best to intervene to achieve these.