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Children Act 1989

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

80Inspection of children’s homes etc. by persons authorised by Secretary of State

(1)The Secretary of State may cause to be inspected from time to time any—

(a)children’s home;

(b)premises in which a child who is being looked after by a local authority is living;

(c)premises in which a child who is being accommodated by or on behalf of a local education authority or voluntary organisation is living;

(d)premises in which a child who is being accommodated by or on behalf of a health authority is living;

(e)premises in which a child is living with a person with whom he has been placed by an adoption agency;

(f)premises in which a child who is a protected child is, or will be, living;

(g)premises in which a privately fostered child, or child who is treated as a foster child by virtue of paragraph 9 of Schedule 8, is living or in which it is proposed that he will live;

(h)premises on which any person is acting as a child minder;

(i)premises with respect to which a person is registered under section 71(1)(b);

(j)residential care home, nursing home or mental nursing home required to be registered under the [1984 c. 23.] Registered Homes Act 1984 and used to accommodate children;

(k)premises which are provided by a local authority and in which any service is provided by that authority under Part III;

(l)independent school providing accommodation for any child;

(2)An inspection under this section shall be conducted by a person authorised to do so by the Secretary of State.

(3)An officer of a local authority shall not be so authorised except with the consent of that authority.

(4)The Secretary of State may require any person of a kind mentioned in subsection (5) to furnish him with such information, or allow him to inspect such records (in whatever form they are held), relating to—

(a)any premises to which subsection (1) or, in relation to Scotland, subsection (1)(h) or (i) applies;

(b)any child who is living in any such premises;

(c)the discharge by the Secretary of State of any of his functions under this Act; or

(d)the discharge by any local authority of any of their functions under this Act,

as the Secretary of State may at any time direct.

(5)The persons are any—

(a)local authority;

(b)voluntary organisation;

(c)person carrying on a children’s home;

(d)proprietor of an independent school;

(e)person fostering any privately fostered child or providing accommodation for a child on behalf of a local authority, local education authority, health authority or voluntary organisation;

(f)local education authority providing accommodation for any child;

(g)person employed in a teaching or administrative capacity at any educational establishment (whether or not maintained by a local education authority) at which a child is accommodated on behalf of a local authority or local education authority;

(h)person who is the occupier of any premises in which any person acts as a child minder (within the meaning of Part X) or provides day care for young children (within the meaning of that Part);

(i)person carrying on any home of a kind mentioned in subsection (1)(j).

(6)Any person inspecting any home or other premises under this section may—

(a)inspect the children there; and

(b)make such examination into the state and management of the home or premises and the treatment of the children there as he thinks fit.

(7)Any person authorised by the Secretary of State to exercise the power to inspect records conferred by subsection (4)—

(a)shall be entitled at any reasonable time to have access to, and inspect and check the operation of, any computer and any associated apparatus or material which is or has been in use in connection with the records in question; and

(b)may require—

(i)the person by whom or on whose behalf the computer is or has been so used; or

(ii)any person having charge of, or otherwise concerned with the operation of, the computer, apparatus or material,

to afford him such reasonable assistance as he may require.

(8)A person authorised to inspect any premises under this section shall have a right to enter the premises for that purpose, and for any purpose specified in subsection (4), at any reasonable time.

(9)Any person exercising that power shall, if so required, produce some duly authenticated document showing his authority to do so.

(10)Any person who intentionally obstructs another in the exercise of that power shall be guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding level 3 on the standard scale.

(11)The Secretary of State may by order provide for subsections (1), (4) and (6) not to apply in relation to such homes, or other premises, as may be specified in the order.

(12)Without prejudice to section 104, any such order may make different provision with respect to each of those subsections.

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