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Multi agency safeguarding hub
MASH hub logo

A new hub to improve the safeguarding response for children, young people and vulnerable adults in Dudley.

The Dudley Multi-agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) brings together key professionals from organisations across the borough, including the council, police, probation, NHS and the voluntary sector.

Who is the MASH?

The MASH will involve staff from:

 Dudley Council’s children’s social care

  • West Midlands Police

  • Dudley Council’s adults social care

  • Education

  • Dudley Clinical Commissioning Group

  • Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust

  • Dudley and Walsall Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust

  • Black Country Partnership NHS Foundation Trust

  • Probation

  • Housing
  • Mental health

  • Early intervention

  • Young people’s services

 

Why have we set up a MASH?

Working together to protect and safeguard children, young people and vulnerable adults is our top priority. We knew there were inconsistencies in how information was gathered and how long it could take for decisions to be made. The MASH is changing all that.

Working together, under one roof, partner agencies can securely share relevant information they have on the child/family or vulnerable adult who has been referred and then swiftly decide on the best course of action to take.

This multi-agency working is key to early and effective identification of risk, improved information sharing, joint decision making and co-ordinated action, leading to improved outcomes.

The MASH will:

  • Act as a single point of entry for referrals

  • Triage referrals

  • Enable thorough research of each case to identify potential risk

  • Share information between agencies

  • Facilitate early intervention – to prevent the need for more intensive interventions at a later stage

  • Manage cases through co-ordinated interventions

 

The need for effective multi-agency working and the sharing of information to ensure better safeguarding outcomes has been raised in a number of reviews and statutory guidance.

The failure of agencies to adequately share information is a common theme in serious case reviews. High profile national cases, such as the death of four-year-old Daniel Pelka, have highlighted the tragic consequences of when crucial information indicating risk is held by just one agency and is not appropriately shared with others.

MASHs have already been established in a number of areas across the country and the West Midlands, including Sandwell, Coventry and Birmingham, Solihull and Walsall.

The MASH was launched on May 16. Initially it will focus on children and young people, but is due to expand to include vulnerable adults within a year.

How to make a referral?

All referrals are to made through our Single Point of Access (SPA)Team with one single contact phone 0300 555 0050. Completed referral forms should be returned securely to spa_team@dudley.gcsx.gov.uk

The SPA team manages all contact activity with children’s social care across the borough, ensuring a greater level of consistency in responding to calls and referrals. 

As well as social care professionals, this central information hub also brings together staff from Dudley Council’s early help, housing and family information service team.

The Dudley’s Thresholds Framework document offers guidance on accessing the right help an support services for children, young people and their families at the right time. It sets out the different thresholds of need and intervention from early help to statutory intervention.

All organisations, agencies and individuals who work with children and young people in Dudley, including those whose work with adults brings them into contact with children and young people should understand these thresholds.

The DSCB Multi Agency Referral Form is avalible via the Report It page

Frequently asked questions

A series of FAQs have been developed about the MASH