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Focus on Understanding Unidentified Adults

Date: Tuesday, 21st May 2024 | Category: Resources, STOP Packs

When supporting children’s safety and wellbeing, it’s essential to consider all the individuals who play a role in a child’s life. Sometimes it may not be immediately apparent to professionals that there are other adults taking on caring responsibilities for a child.

The term ‘Unidentified Adult’ refers to an adult who agencies are not aware of, or not engaging with, and who may be living in a child’s household or having regular contact with them. This can include parents, partners, grandparents and non-family members, such as babysitters, family friends and neighbours.

Identifying and engaging with unidentified adults is crucial. Unidentified adults can play a significant positive role in a child’s development and wellbeing. However, several reviews have highlighted that professionals often fail to recognise and assess these key adults, including fathers, mothers/fathers’ partners, extended family members, and friends who are involved in a child’s care. This lack of recognition has resulted in many children experiencing harm or tragically losing their lives.

To address this issue, this month, HSCP is focussing on raising awareness about Understanding Unidentified Adults and are pleased to launch its latest Safeguarding Theme Overview Pack (STOP) on the topic. This one-stop resource is designed to support multi-agency practitioners in identifying and assessing all adults who play a significant role in a child’s life. The STOP pack provides a range of essential tools, including:

• Toolkits, including the newly revised Understanding Unidentified Adults Toolkit
• Guidance and procedures
• Fully funded multi-agency training
• Day in the Life tool
• Case studies
• External resources
• Posters

Download the STOP Pack here.