How to contact us for advice

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Our advice service

We provide advice to parents, grandparents, relatives, friends and kinship carers who are involved with children’s services in England or need their help. We can help you understand processes and options when social workers or courts are making decisions about your child’s welfare.

Our advice service is free, independent and confidential.

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By phone or email

To speak to an adviser, please call our free and confidential advice line 0808 801 0366 (Monday to Friday 9.30am to 3pm, excluding Bank Holidays). For Textphone dial 18001 followed by the advice line number. Or you can ask us a question via email using our advice enquiry form.

Discuss on our forums

Our online advice forums are an anonymous space where parents and kinship carers (also known as family and friends carers) can get legal and practical advice, build a support network and learn from other people’s experiences.

Advice on our website

Our get help and advice section describes the processes that you and your family are likely to go through, so that you know what to expect. Our webchat service can help you find the information and advice on our website which will help you understand the law and your rights.

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Strategy discussion

This is a meeting that takes place between a social worker and the police when they are worried a child may be at risk of significant harm. Other professionals who know a child, such as their teacher or a health visitor may also be involved.

Its purpose it to share information and decide whether:

  • Children’s services need to start child protection enquiries. If it is felt that this is necessary, the strategy discussion should focus on how the matter should proceed.
  • Any immediate steps need to be taken to keep the child safe.

The strategy discussion may be a face-to-face meeting, or it could be a discussion that takes place over the phone or in a series of phone calls.

Parents are not normally invited to a strategy discussion. However, they should be told soon afterwards what the plan is for the child, as long as this does not cause any risk to the child.

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