Powys County Council
Miss A complained about the Council’s failure to assess and conduct its own investigation into reports made to it about alleged abuse of her son. She said that the Council passed the matter to another Social Services department for jurisdictional reasons, and this decision was poor and demonstrated a lack of judgement.
The Ombudsman found that the Council had declined to investigate Miss A’s complaint in accordance with the Social Services Complaints Procedure (Wales) Regulations, on the basis that doing so may influence ongoing legal proceedings. The Council failed to provide any evidence as to how investigation of its administrative/procedural decision not to undertake an assessment of Miss A’s son, would likely prejudice family court proceedings. The Ombudsman therefore concluded that Miss A’s complaint was one that should be investigated in accordance with the Regulations.
The Ombudsman contacted the Council and it agreed to, within 5 working days:
a) Commence a formal investigation into Miss A’s complaint, in accordance with Regulation 17 of the Social Services Complaints Procedure (Wales) Regulations 2014.
The Ombudsman was satisfied that this would provide a resolution to the issues considered in this complaint.