Signs of a child safeguarding risk


Call 999 if it is an emergency and the child is in immediate danger

If you are concerned about a child, this page has information on signs of abuse and how to respond if a child tells you about abuse or you believe they are being abused. 

What is child abuse?

Child abuse falls into several different categories. These can include the following:

Physical abuse SHOW

Emotional abuse SHOW

Sexual abuse SHOW

Neglect SHOW

Bruising in non-mobile infants SHOW

Children left alone SHOW

You can read more on the NSPCC website about child abuse and neglect and signs, symptoms and effects of child abuse and neglect.

How to respond to a child who tells you about abuse

If a child talks to you about abuse, neglect or mistreatment they are experiencing, it is important that you remain calm and reassuring so that the child feels listened to and understood. It is also important that the person they speak to responds appropriately to get the child the support they need. Some tips on how to respond are:

  • Take any disclosure seriously and report it no matter how unlikely it might seem
  • Make notes about what has happened - when and where the discussion happened, who was present and what the child said
  • Once you have decided to report it, do not ask further questions. Let professionals take over from here

You might find the NSPCC resources on helping children disclose abuse helpful.

What to do if you think a child is being abused

If you have concerns about a child, you can report this to us by filling in the online referral form.


Before you fill in this form

You won't be able to save this form to complete later, so please allow yourself up to 10 minutes to fill in the form.

Although this online form can be completed on a mobile phone, due to the length of this form we recommend you use a desktop, laptop or tablet.

Online referral form

Should you wish to discuss your concerns first, you can call us.

Members of the public can phone us on 023 8083 3004.

If you are a professional, please contact us on 023 8083 2300.