Following the release of the Serious Case Review into the death of schoolboy Daniel Pelka, the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children has stated that there was 'a basic lack of real action to protect Daniel':
It’s important to remember that only two people are ultimately responsible for little Daniel Pelka’s death – his mother and her partner. However, it’s right that we look at missed opportunities and what could have been done differently. Whilst this SCR judges that no single, specific failure led to his death, time and again we see a basic lack of real action to protect Daniel. Processes were followed correctly much of the time but processes alone do not save children
There must be a culture change from process driven box-ticking to child-aware curiosity; a willingness to question excuses; and a resolve to record and follow through with appropriate urgency whenever we see a child suffering. Professionals must act on their instincts when they feel something could be seriously wrong, not wait until they are certain. Tragically, in Daniel’s case, this failure to see and act at speed may have cost him his life. SCRs like this one have generated enough lessons now – we owe it to Daniel to ensure they are learnt, not filed and forgotten.
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