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LADO Designated Officer

Shout out to the LADO / DO

Every local authority has a Designated Officer, known as LADO (Local Authority Designated Officer) or DO (Designated Officer).  I have worked with 3 LADOs in my educational career in Northamptonshire and Milton Keynes and I must say how amazing they all were.

If you aren’t aware of what a LADO/DO is or what they do, they are a person that works within Children’s Services, giving advice and guidance to employers, organisations and other individuals who have concerns about the behaviour of an adult who works with children and young people

Sadly, I had to work with a LADO following a concern at one of my schools.  She was an angel that guided me through the emotional turmoil before me. Without going into too much detail, she was with me through every stage.  I remember having conversations with her late one evening going through all the details and she was so down to earth and reassuring.  We had many meetings together and she was professional, passionate, and empathetic.  She fought by my side when other professionals (sadly) brushed off the concerns and she worked highly effectively with the police and OFSTED.  Throughout, she worked with me and my HR when we were dealing with other agencies, and I know she will continue to support me if I pick up the phone to her right now.

If you work with children in any capacity, please take the time right now to find out who your LADO/DO is.  All you have to do is search for LADO in your ‘shire.  For example: ‘LADO in Northamptonshire’ or ‘LADO in Milton Keynes’.  Once you have found them, get their phone number, and email address, and share this with all of your staff. Make sure everyone knows that if they cannot speak to management about a concern regarding an adult’s behaviour towards children or young people, then they can contact them.  Whistleblowing is scary but it is the right thing to do.  People worry if they get it wrong but imagine if their concerns were right and they did nothing!

One of the most important tips we give in our training at About…Safeguarding is to download the NHS Safeguarding APP.  You can be anywhere in England, and you can find your nearest Local Authority procedures for reporting concerns for a child, young adult or an adult and links to your nearest LADO/DO

A BIG thank you to all the LADOs / DOs for all the work you do and the support you give to all.  You are the guardian angels for all organisations that work with children and young people.