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I am sorry that you have not been able to get through to us on our telephone service, do keep trying our service is covered by advisers every weekday and we have more than one incoming line available, it is a very busy service. The service opens at 9.30am and closes at 3.00pm, just after 10.00am may be a good time to try. The number is 0808 801 0366.
In the meantime our advice sheets may give you an idea about the circumstances in which children can be taken into care. Firstly one about what happens when you ‘agree’ that you child can be accommodated, Children looked after by Children’s Services under a voluntary arrangement and below is an extract of page 3 of our advice sheet number 15:
When can children’s services get involved in arranging my child’s care?
Children’s services (previously known as social services) are responsible for making sure that children are safe and well enough cared for by their parents or the person looking after them. Sometimes children’s services receive information that makes them worry about a child’s welfare. If they believe that your child may be harmed, they must take action to protect your child. Depending on the information they receive they may:
• make child protection enquiries and make plans to keep your child safe; or
• decide to apply straight to court if they think your child is or may be suffering harm and they can’t be protected in some other way.
However, it is important to note that: - Children’s services must get the permission of the court to remove your child against your wishes. Here ‘court’ means family court judges or magistrates who make decisions about children; and - the only time Children’s services won’t need either your or the court’s permission remove your child is if they think your child is in immediate danger in which case they can ask the police to use their powers to keep them safe.
I hope this information is helpful.