Admission to secure care can be a frightening and extremely difficult experience for children, young people and their families:
“It’s hard when you come in and you don’t know anybody and it’s all like too much at once to get your head round it all” (Gough, 2017, p.18).
It is crucial they are informed and prepared as far as possible ahead of admission.
A child or young person may be admitted initially to the assessment unit or a house unit. The young person’s parent/guardian and/or Lead Professional should be present on admission to ensure the child or young person has someone they know with them to support them through this process (Gough, 2016).
Arrangements should be made by secure care staff for the child or young person to:
- Meet the relevant managerial staff of the unit and a representative of the child or young person’s case team
- Be given a tour of the unit in which they will initially reside and the whole secure unit
- Be provided with a statement of their rights and responsibilities
- Be provided with information booklets/leaflets including complaints procedures, fire procedures and prohibited items
- Have the initial risk assessment/risk management plan and individual crisis management plan completed to determine which safety measures are required at point of admission (for example level of observations)
- Be introduced to other children and young people residing in the unit and shown the child or young person’s room
- Receive a full examination by the doctor to identify any immediate health needs
The child or young person’s social worker should:
- Provide a completed Individual Placement Agreement (IPA). This is an extremely important document which forms the contract between the purchaser and secure care provider and details immediate needs and concerns, initial outcomes based on the GIRFEC wellbeing indicators , and intended post-placement plans (this will be completed by Children and child or young person’s (CYP) Placement Manager for young people sentenced under sections 205(2) or 208 of the Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1995).
- Ensure information has been shared by the court and provide the Child’s Plan
- Share any other relevant information, including education reports, and psychological and health information
- Liaise with unit staff to agree a contact list
Resources for this page
- Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014
- Scotland Excel
- Wellbeing: A guide to measuring meaningful outcomes