Number of child risk cases jumps in Hartlepool by 10 per cent with 1,000 youngesters now supported

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THE number of youngsters subject to a child protection plan has risen by 10 over the past year - but the number classed as looked-after has remained the same.

Hartlepool Borough Council’s children’s services department currently provides help and support for 1,091 children.

Of those, the number subject to a child protection plan is 136, 10 more than this time last year.

Children placed on protection plans are at serious risk of neglect, abuse or significant harm.

The intensive support package ensures children see doctors regularly, get to school safely and have someone to talk to.

Officers say neglect continues to account for the highest number of protection plans – and over the past year, 24 children became subject to a plan for a second or subsequent time.

A report to the council’s children’s services committee said officers closely scrutinise each case to assess why some children have to go back on protection plans.

Meanwhile, the number of youngsters classed as “looked after” at the end of March, this year, was 190, the same as this time last year.

Of those, 160 are in foster care, 11 are in residential care and seven are living with a friend or relative with the rest placed with parents or for adoption.

Meanwhile, there are 765 vulnerable youngsters who have complex or acute needs, classed as children in need.