Operation Encompass is an innovative project which Northumbria Police is running in partnership with local schools. The project aims to safeguard and support children who are affected by domestic abuse.
What is Operation Encompass?
The project aims to safeguard and support children and young people who are involved in or affected by incidents involving domestic abuse.
Witnessing domestic abuse is really distressing for a young person, who can often see the abuse, hear it from another room, see a parent's injuries or distress afterwards or be physically hurt trying to stop the abuse.
Following such an incident, children will often arrive at school upset and unprepared. Operation Encompass aims to ensure that appropriate school staff are made aware early enough to support children in the best way possible.
How does Operation Encompass work?
Following an incident of domestic abuse in the home, children will often arrive at school upset and unprepared. Operation Encompass aims to ensure that appropriate school staff are made aware of the incident early enough to support children in the best way possible.
After we receive a report of abuse in which children were present in the home, our specialist officers will make contact with Children’s Social Care. They will then communicate relevant information to nominated school staff. This ensures support can be provided as quickly as possible and children can feel safe and listened to.
Each school has a member of staff (key adult) who has been fully trained to liaise with the police and social services. This key adult is able to ensure the right support is made available to the child following the disclosure of a domestic abuse incident.
Police will share information with First Response who will phone the school between 8 and 8:30am and ask to speak with the Head Teacher or a Designated Safeguarding Lead. The school will be informed that there was an incident and the name of the child. The First Response Children’s Duty (FRCD) Officer making the phone call will not be in a position to give more information at that point.
By knowing that the child has had this experience, the school is in a better position to be supportive and understanding of the child’s needs and possible behaviours. The Head teacher or Designated Safeguarding Lead will share this information on a need to know basis.