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Publication of ‘Children Order Child Protection and Referral Statistics for Northern Ireland (quarter ending 31 December 2012)’

The Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety has today published the ‘Children Order Child Protection and Referral Statistics for Northern Ireland (quarter ending 31 December 2012)’.
Friday, 17 February 2012

This is the eighth reporting of quarterly figures relating to Child Protection in Northern Ireland for the quarter ending 31 December 2012.

Key Facts and Figures:

Child Protection Register

  • At 31 December 2011, 2,137 children were listed on the Child Protection Register in Northern Ireland, a decrease of 2% on the previous quarter (2,220); annually the register count has decreased by 9% (205), from 2,378 to 2,137, with changes by Trust ranging from an increase of 35% (75) in the Western Trust to a decrease of 26% (134) in the South Eastern Trust;
  • Since 30 September 2011, Register counts fell by 7% (38) in the Belfast Trust, 4% (23) in the South Eastern Trust, 3% (10) in the Western Trust and 2% (7) in the Southern Trust. There was an increase of 8% (31) in the Northern Trust;
  • Counts of the 2,137 children on the Register at 31 December 2011 by Trusts, indicates over one quarter (26% - 567) were in the South Eastern Trust, with 24% (511) in the Belfast Trust, 20% (424) in the Northern Trust, 18% (384) in the Southern Trust, and 13% (287) in the Western Trust;
  • The age profile of children on the Register has remained relatively stable from quarter to quarter, with 35% (768) aged 5 – 11 years, 29% (633) aged 1 – 4 years, 21% (456) aged 12 – 15 years, 9% (194) under 1, and 6% (122) aged 16 or over, for the quarter ending 31 December 2011;
  • At 31 December 2011, almost 9 in 10 children (89%) on the Register had no recorded legal status, 5% (99) were Accommodated (Article 21) and 4% (91) were subject to an Interim Care Order (Article 57);
  • Taking account of local population demographics, Register counts per 10,000 children’s population (under 18), ranged from 37.7 to 70.3, in the Western and South Eastern Trusts respectively; overall there were 50.3 children per 10,000 on the Register at 31 December 2011;

Child Protection Referrals

  • Child Protection Referrals for the quarter ending 31 December 2011 (1,030), were 5% (49) lower than the previous quarter (1,079), and 4% (40) below the referrals count for the same quarter in 2010 (1,070);
  • Almost half of Referrals (47%- 481) originated from within Social Services, 16% (167) from the PSNI, 10% (102) from ‘School’ or an ‘Educational Welfare Officer’, 5% (55) from Relatives and 8% (81) from ‘Other’ sources;
  • Quarterly changes across Trusts indicate that Referrals fell by 31% (43) in the Western Trust, by 15% (43) in the Southern Trust and by 4% (16) in the South Eastern Trust. Referrals rose in the Belfast and Northern Trusts by 3% and 37% (49) respectively.

Notes to editors:

1. This information was collated by Community Information Branch within the DHSSPS.

2. This Bulletin is the eighth quarterly reporting of Children Order Child Protection and Referral Statistics.

3. Statistics detailed within the bulletin include numbers of children on the Child Protection Register at 31 December 2011, by Legal Status and Age, and numbers of Child Protection Referrals by Source of Referral during the third quarter of 2011. Trend analyses are presented regionally and by HSC Trusts.

4. Similar statistics for the quarter ending 31 March 2012 are due for publication on 25 May 2012.

5. This publication is available online .

Further information is available from:

Community Information Branch
Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety
Room 11, Annexe 2,
Castle Buildings,
Stormont Belfast BT4 3SP
Tel: (028) 90 520599
Fax: (028) 90 523288
E-mail: cib@dhsspsni.gov.uk
Internet: Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety

7. Media enquiries about this press release to DHSSPS Press Office on 028 9052 0074, or out of hours contact the Duty Press Officer via pager number 076 9971 5440 and your call will be returned.