Investigating the Characteristics of Vulnerable Referrals Made to a Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub [2019]

Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hubs (MASHs) have been a feature of safeguarding processes since 2010, aiming to increase information sharing, joint decision-making, and co-ordinated interventions between safeguarding agencies. However, understanding the mechanisms underpinning MASH, and who they protect, is limited. This article attempts to bridge this gap in knowledge by quantitatively examining referrals made to one MASH location in the North of England between 1 October 2013 and 30 November 2014 (n = 51,264). The findings outline general features of a MASH framework while demonstrating that demand placed upon MASH is influenced by a range of static and dynamic risk factors, including gender, age, and ethnicity. The study highlights the complex nature of referrals made to MASH and suggests that while MASH has taken a step towards a multi-agency approach to safeguarding, questions regarding MASHs ability to effectively safeguard vulnerable individuals at the earliest opportunity remain.

Sarah Shorrock, Michelle A McManus, Stuart Kirby
Policing: A Journal of Policy and Practice, Volume 13, Issue 2, June 2019