Andre (not his real name) was a residential social worker in a children’s home. He was increasingly concerned that a colleague, Lionel (not his real name), seemed to have developed a close relationship with a 12 year old girl in the home. During a holiday, Lionel insisted that the girl should travel in his car alone with him and he spent a lot of time with her during the holiday.
Andre and a colleague raised their concerns discreetly to the local authority who launched an investigation and put Lionel on special leave. Once the investigation concluded, Lionel returned to work and Andre called Protect worried that this was the wrong decision.
We advised Andre to contact the Head of Child Protection at the local authority to explain his concerns. However, we also clarified that it was for the local authority to decide the appropriate action and what mattered was that it was sure that Lionel was not a risk. We highlighted that Lionel’s return to the home did not mean that no action had been taken. Andre spoke to the local authority and felt reassured with its decision as he knew that it would monitor the home and remind staff of the value of whistleblowing.