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Early Help – Locality & Community Support Service

The Locality and Community Support Service (LCSS) has been created as part of Oxfordshire County Council’s, Children’s Services Integration Programme to support partner agencies across Oxfordshire. It is a professional facing service (including community/voluntary sector).

Contact details:

LCSS North Tel: 0345 2412703
LCSS Central Tel: 0345 2412705
LCSS South Tel: 0345 2412608

Opening Hours: 8.30 – 5pm (Mon – Thurs) 8.30am – 4pm (Fri)

LCSS North Samuelson House, Tramway Rd, Banbury OX16 5AU LCSS.North@oxfordshire.gov.uk
LCSS Central Knights Court, Between Towns Road, Cowley, Oxford, OX4 3LX LCSS.Central@oxfordshire.gov.uk
LCSS South Abbey House, Abbey Close, Abingdon, Oxon, OX14 3JD LCSS.South@oxfordshire.gov.uk

When to contact LCSS

You should contact the Locality Community Support Service if you:

  • Have emerging concerns for a child that does not require an immediate safeguarding response
  • Need support or guidance with an Early Help Assessment or TAF
  • Wish to complete a No Names Consultation

Professionals should:

  • Discuss their concerns with the family
  • Gain advice from LCSS ideally with family’s knowledge
  • If you wish to discuss a concern without a family’s consent you can gain advice via a No Names Consultation only
  • Refer to the Threshold of Need Matrix before calling

If LCSS are supporting you with a family and immediate safeguarding concerns arise, you must still call the MASH immediately on 0345 050 7666.

Who is my LCSS Link Worker?

All local schools and other organisations have an LCSS link worker assigned.  These lists show who these link workers are (last updated 20 June 2017).

If your organisation is not listed, contact your area team to find out who your link worker is.

The Role of the LCSS

The Locality and Community Support Service (LCSS) has been created as part of Oxfordshire County Council’s, Children’s Services Integration Programme.
LCSS will work with professionals (including community and voluntary partners) and provide the following services:

  • Advice and guidance to all community professionals who have concerns about a child or family, which is not an immediate safeguarding concern (these should be referred straight to the MASH)
  • A named link worker to specific organisations for example schools and GP
  • A No Names Consultation service which enables professionals to talk through concerns for children where there is no consent from the family
  • Support professionals when a MASH enquiry does not lead to a Statutory Children’s Services referral , to ensure that Early Help Assessment (EHA) (previously CAF)/Team Around the Family (TAF) processes are in place within the community
  • Support professionals to access targeted support within Children’s Services to ensure children get the right support at the right time
  • Review all Early Help Assessments and support professionals to complete them where appropriate, and offer feedback to support on-going professional  development
  • Provide support to Lead Professionals, including the provision of advice and attendance at Team Around the Family meetings where appropriate
  • Deliver Early Help Assessment & Team Around the Family training to ensure plans are child centred and family focussed. In addition the team will facilitate local network and  training events in response to your area’s need
  • Share  information of the services/resources available to partners which can be used to support children and families within their locality
  • If the family has an EHA/TAF and non-immediate safeguarding concerns arise that require a referral to Children’s Social Care (CSC) the LCSS worker, if in support,  will initiate this referral into CSC.

Early Help Assessment and Team around the Family multiagency procedures

The current and approved versions of the Oxfordshire Threshold of Needs, Early Help Assessment Form and Team around the Family documentation (formerly TAC and CAF) can be found here:

The LCSS Teams will provide advice and support to professionals on Early Help Assessments (EHA-formerly CAF’s) and Team around the Family (TAFs). They will also be responsible for the storage, reviewing and feedback to professionals on EHAs and TAFs completed.

All EHA’s and TAF minutes will need to be sent to your local LCSS team.

LCSS are the route into Early Help. LCSS works with partners to identify those families who require additional support from Early Help Teams in the Family Solutions Service, and will facilitate a service from the team.

Immediate Concerns about a Child

The Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) will remain the front door to Children’s Social Care for all child protection and immediate safeguarding concerns. If there is an immediate safeguarding concern, for example:

  • Allegations/concerns that the child has been sexually/physically abused
  • Concerns that the child is suffering from severe neglect or other severe health risks
  • Concern that a child is living in or will be returned to a situation that may place him/her at immediate risk
  • The child is frightened to return home
  • The child has been abandoned or parent is absent

You should call the MASH immediately

Tel: 0345 050 7666

(This number will take you through to Customer Services who will ask a series of questions and triage into MASH where safeguarding concerns are raised)

A No Names Consultation should not be used for the above scenarios