Walsall Metropolitan Borough Council won ‘Data for Good Initiative of the Year’ and this category attracted the most entries overall. Their innovative use of administrative datasets to help better protect vulnerable people, while also saving time and money, received the highest score from the judges.
The responsibility to safeguard vulnerable residents lies with councils and a range of safeguarding partners, but too often vulnerability is identified too late. Limited data co-ordination between organisations makes it hard not only to identify people who need support before they hit a crisis, but also to understand whether they are known to other safeguarding agencies and the wider safeguarding landscape.
Prevention is critical to improve safeguarding and we know that data needs to be more effectively shared across agencies if we are to better protect vulnerable people and reduce the potential of people falling into the social care system. This is a big challenge.
Listen back to hear learnings from a powerful project, backed by the LGA and NHS Digital, to link data across adult services, children’s services, public health, the NHS, Police and Fire and Rescue Services.
Listen back to hear:
- How this innovative and ground-breaking approach to combining administrative datasets has created a clear view of safeguarding concerns across all partners
- How new smart approaches to data management has tackled the security and data governance challenges
- How the data is brought to life to help multi-agency safeguarding teams, social workers and all frontline safeguarding teams to improve communication, liaison and decision making
With guest speaker Paul Withers, Data Protection Manager, Walsall Council.
MAST is created in partnership with the LGA, NHS Digital, CC2i and Policy in Practice.
View the webinar
28 matches were made across 12 addresses over three months between the fire service and families known to children’s services. At least two of these matches, one with multiple incidents at the same address, were not known to Children's services. This alone could justify the value of the project in itself.
Feedback from safeguarding professionals
It’s not replacing our professional judgement; it’s just helping us to know when our professional judgement needs to be applied.”
We thought this would be another system you’d have to enter into – it’s great that it uses existing data from other systems.”
We’ve been interested in ways of doing this better for ten years, it’s great that it’s finally happening.”
We can see how useful this is going to be.”