Confusion over launch date of new safeguarding hub for young people

Hannah Crouch

Hannah Crouch

Confusion over launch date of new safeguarding hub for young people

Confusion still surrounds the launch of a multi-agency safeguarding hub (MASH) as two major partners involved are unable to decide on an official start date.

The organisation will be a partnership between the Slough Children’s Services Trust, Thames Valley Police (TVP), Slough Borough Council’s (SBC) housing department and others.

The trust is hoping when the service is up and running it will help the safeguarding of children and young people by improving communication between agencies.

It would mean children would not have to repeat the same information and that vulnerable children will have fast access to the right support.

The start date of the MASH was expected to be this month but it appears to have been delayed, while its location has also not yet been confirmed.

Speaking at an SBC meeting on April 7, TVP’s Local Area Commander (LPA) for Slough, Superintendent Gavin Wong, told councillors there would be a ‘soft launch in July’ followed by a ‘full launch in September’.

However the trust could not confirm to the Express whether this was the case and said no official time has been agreed.

The trust did state the first point of contact for the MASH is due to be Slough Police Station in Windsor Road, with TVP pledging to improve the quality of its response to vulnerable children.

Detective Chief Inspector Linda York from the protecting vulnerable people unit at TVP said safeguarding is a ‘high priority’ for police.

Eric de Mello, head of operations at the trust, said: “The MASH is just one example of our continued commitment to working closely with partner agencies to protect children and young people at risk of harm.

“We understand it is often incredibly challenging for children and families to tell agencies their story, which is why we have strengthened the single point of contact.”

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