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What to do if you are worried about a child

Safeguarding children where parents misuse

How children are affected

A parent's drug or alcohol use can cause concern about the welfare of children and is clearly a risk factor as evidenced by serious case reviews and research. Drug/alcohol use by themselves will not lead to a child being considered at risk of abuse or neglect. But professionals should positively identify why they think a parent’s drug/alcohol use is at a 'safe' or 'manageable' level and doesn't constitute a child protection issue. The long term effect of substance misuse may not be immediately apparent but the continued absence, emotional or physical unavailability of a parent through substance misuse can be very damaging to children.

Support for parents with dependency issues

All organisations we work with will treat parents and pregnant women who use drugs/alcohol in the same way as other parents who require their support and services in terms of their eligibility for services. Our Drug and Action Team (Please click here) offers access to drug treatment services for all.

Useful websites:

• Alcoholics Anonymous
• Alcohol Concern
• Family Support Resource
• Frank - Free, confidential, 24 hour drugs advice.
• Narcotics Anonymous

Substance misuse services for both adults & young people: SMART, 38 Station Road, Wokingham, Berkshire RG40 2AE Tel : 0118 977 2022    E-mail: W@smartcjs.org.uk


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Berkshire Child protection Procedures Online

If you are concerned about the safety or welfare of a child please phone.

  • Referral and Assessment Team (Children's Safeguarding and Social Care Team: telephone 0118 908 8002 or email: triage@wokingham.gov.uk. You will also need to complete a multi agency referral form (see below). 
  • Emergency Duty Team - out of office hours: telephone: 01344 786 543 FREE
  • Thames Valley Police: telephone 0845 8505 505 FREE
  • NSPCC (National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children) 24 Hour Helpline: 0808 800 5000 5000 FREE

Call 999 in an emergency If you believe a child is in immediate danger

Multi Agency Referral Form