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2.3 Strategy Discussion / Meeting


  1. Definition and Purpose
  2. A Meeting or a Discussion?
  3. Who Must Attend?
  4. Recording of the Strategy Discussion / Meeting

1. Definition and Purpose

1.1 A Strategy Discussion / Meeting or Meeting is held whenever there is reasonable cause to suspect that a child is suffering, or is likely to suffer, Significant Harm.

The purpose of a Strategy Meeting is to:

  • Confirm details of the concerns;
  • Evaluate the content and urgency;
  • Agree the conduct and timing of any criminal investigation led by police;
  • Decide whether a NARRATES S 46 must be initiated or continued if it has already begun;
  • Agree whether the Section 46 Enquiry will be conducted solely by Children and Families or jointly with the police, as set out in the Isle of Man Safeguarding Board Procedures, Child Protection Enquiries - Section 46 Children and Young Person's Act 2001 Procedure. Agree whether there is a need for Medical Assessment or treatment;
  • Agree what action is needed immediately to safeguard and promote the welfare of the child and/or provide interim services and support. If the child is in hospital decisions must be made about how to secure the safe discharge of the child;
  • Determine what information from the Strategy Discussion / Meeting must be shared with the family;
  • Determine if legal advice is required;
  • Agree a plan for the NARRATES Section 46 Enquiry/Core Assessment including who must be interviewed and when and how the child’s wishes and feelings must be obtained;
  • Consider the race and ethnicity of the child and family and how this must be taken into account including establishing whether an interpreter is needed;
  • Consider any impairment (child or family) and determine particular needs including access and/or any assistance that will be required with communication;
  • Consider the needs of other children who may be affected, for example, siblings and other children in contact with alleged abusers;
  • Agree a Contingency Plan if a parent refuses consent for an interview or Medical Assessment of the child.

2. A Meeting or a Discussion?

2.1 Strategy Discussions/Meetings can take place by telephone in less complex cases or at the initial stages of the enquiry in complex cases where time is needed in order to clarify who must attend the Strategy Meeting. The meeting is expected to take place within 24 hours and authorisation must be sought from the Senior Manager (IRT) if it is not held within this timeframe. In any event the meeting must take place within 5 working days.

Strategy Meetings (face to face) must be held:

3. Who Must Attend?

  • Police and Children and Families are standard attendees at every Strategy Discussion / Meeting;
  • Relevant staff from other agencies who may have information that will be of assistance in planning the enquiries e.g. health, education, probation;
  • Those who are sufficiently senior and able to contribute to the discussion of available information and make decisions on behalf of their agencies;
  • The member of the medical team, ideally the medical consultant, senior ward nurse or nurse with knowledge of the child, where a child is an inpatient.
3.2 Strategy Meetings must be chaired by an experienced manager from Children and Families.
3.3 Complex Abuse Strategy Meetings must be chaired by a senior member from Children and Families who must notify the Chair of the Safeguarding Board (e.g. in the case of possible Fabricated or Induced Illness, or where allegations have been made against a person who works with children). For more information, see the Isle of Man afeguarding Board Procedures, Fabricated or Induced Illness Procedure and Allegations Against Staff or Volunteers (MASM).
3.4 More than one Strategy Meeting may be necessary in complex cases.

4. Recording of the Strategy Discussion / Meeting


The Manager or Senior Practitioner calling the Strategy Discussion / Meeting will record, or will arrange to have recorded, on Protocol a Record of Strategy Meeting pro forma detailing:

  • The date, time and venue of the Strategy Discussion / Meeting;
  • Those present or participating by report into the Strategy Discussion / Meeting;
  • Information shared, all decisions reached, the basis for those decisions and future actions agreed for all agencies.
4.2 The record of the Strategy Discussion / Meeting must be circulated within one working day to those who participated.
4.3 The Manager or Senior Practitioner who decides that a NARRATES Section 46 Enquiry is appropriate must record the outcome of the Strategy Meeting on Protocol as ‘Start NARRATES and assign the enquiries to the appropriate social worker. This will then appear in their worktray as a task, along with a NARRATES Assessment - which will automatically be opened if one is not already active.