What are the trends in other children's social work data?
Between 2009 and 2020 the number of children referred to the Children's Reporter decreased by 73% (Chart 9), while the number of children looked after or on the child protection register has remained broadly stable over this period. The decrease is the result of falls in both the number of offence and non-offence referrals. Offence referrals now account for 21% of all referrals.
The fall in referrals to the Reporter is likely to be due to pre-referral screening across many areas of the country. This has led to a reduction in referrals received by the Reporter where compulsory measures are not deemed necessary; and a proportionate increase in referrals, where deemed necessary.