LADO - Local Authority Designated Officer

Who, What, Why, Where and When

Who do we contact if there has been an allegation made against a member of staff/volunteer working with C&YP?


What does the LADO do?

The LADO is responsible for managing child protections allegations that have been made against staff/volunteers who work with C&YP.

The LADO should be alerted to all cases in which it is alleged that a person who works with children has:

  • Behaved in a way that has, or may have harmed a child;
  • Possibly committed a criminal offence against / related to a child;
  • Behaved toward a child in a way that indicates he or she would pose a risk of harm.

The procedures apply to situations when:

  • There are suspicions or allegations of abuse by a person who works with children in either a paid or unpaid capacity - as a permanent, temporary or agency staff member, contract worker, consultant, volunteer, approved foster carer, child minder or approved adopter;
  • It is discovered that an individual known to have been involved previously in child abuse, is or has been working with children.

Once you have made your referral to the LADO, they will get back to you as quickly as possible with guidance from their investigation and guidance on next steps that you need to follow. Timescales depend on nature, seriousness, and complexity of allegation(s) though in general.

  • 80% of cases should be resolved within one month;
  • 90% within three months;
  • All but the most exceptional should be completed within twelve months (it is unlikely cases requiring a criminal prosecution or complex Police investigation can be completed in less than three months).

Why do we need to contact the LADO?

Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018 Document states that: "Any allegation should be reported immediately to a senior manager within the organisation. The Designated Officer should also be informed within one working day of all allegations that come to an employer's attention or that are made directly to the Police".

It is our duty to protect C&YP and safeguard all in our care. Organisations must have a Safeguarding Policy and part of the policy must state about the procedure for an allegation.

Remember Confidentiality and information must be restricted to those who have a need to know in order to:

  • Protect children;
  • Facilitate enquiries;
  • Avoid victimisation;
  • Safeguard the rights of the person about whom the allegation has been made and others who might be affected;
  • Manage disciplinary / complaints aspects.

Where do we find the necessary information in order to make a referral?

This can all be found: 

The referral form can be found by following this link:

LADO Team: 01992 555420

Children’s Services: 0300 123 4040

When do you need to contact the LADO?

HCSB states “All organisations which provide services for children,or provide staff or volunteers or students on placement to work with or care for children, should have and operate a procedure for handling allegations” and when an allegation has been brought to your attention, you have a duty to report to the LADO. The Designated Officer must be informed, within one working day, of all allegations that come to the employer's attention and appear to meet the threshold in Section 1, Scope of Allegation so that (s)he can consult or refer to the Police Designated Unit Manager and Children's Services Team Manager as appropriate.

Visit the local contacts page for more information: