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The voice of the child: learning from case reviews

Summary of learning for improved practice around the voice of the child

Publication date May 2024

Listening to and capturing the voice of the child is essential for effective safeguarding practice. It helps professionals to understand children’s lived experiences, hear their views about their lives and circumstances, and take effective action to support or safeguard them.

However, case reviews highlight that professionals often face challenges around hearing and acting upon what children are telling them. Key issues include: children not being seen frequently enough or asked about their views and feelings, barriers to seeing children not being adequately challenged, and difficulties in correctly understanding and reflecting upon the child’s voice.

The learning from these reviews highlights that professionals should seek to hear and facilitate the voice of the child by:

  • understanding the different ways children communicate
  • including the child’s voice in assessments and arrangements
  • gaining appropriate skills and knowledge to help understand and reflect on the voice of the child
  • building trusted relationships with children.
The voice of the child: learning from case reviews
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Browse our full series of learning from case reviews briefings

Our series of thematic briefings highlight the learning from case reviews conducted when a child dies, or is seriously harmed, as a result of abuse or neglect. Each briefing focuses on a different topic or learning for specific sectors, pulling together key risk factors and practice recommendations.

> See the full series