I have 20 years of experience as a social worker, from the front line to leadership, and I know that awareness of child abuse and being able to identify it can play a vital role in keeping children safe. Recent, tragic media reports have no doubt affected us all and serve as a reminder that we can all do more.
Child neglect has been staring us in the face for too long. Headlines relate the tragic stories of children who grow up shockingly deprived and, in extreme cases, die because of neglect. These children not only lack basic essentials like nutritious food and adequate clothing, they also lack the love, support and warmth that every youngster needs to thrive.
In a practical sense, no single remedy can address this endemic issue. Instead a range of solutions, constituting a holistic approach, are required. Firstly, a truly independent inquiry should be commissioned - one which is not led by any of the institutions implicated in the case, and further not implemented by a high profile man or men.
Every day, we work with vulnerable children, many of whom have experienced or are at risk of child sexual exploitation. This horrific abuse has affected a number of children supported by our services, whether related to risks to those in residential or foster care, or to young parents receiving our help. Awareness must be raised and professionals, children, and their carers must be educated about the risks around exploitation, as well as ways to guard against it.
The growth in portable USB devices and mobile storage means there is a disturbing trend of offenders increasingly bringing illegal images or videos into the workplace. In fact, many businesses are already unwittingly storing, and allowing the movement of, illegal images and videos across their networks.
The public is increasingly engaged and motivated to act. The relevant policy is in place and front line professionals are being slowly equipped with the tools and information they need to ensure that FGM is streamlined into their child safeguarding procedures. There is no reason to continue to fail our girls.
This week it was reported that a five-year old Tibetan girl had been allegedly raped by two Tibetan adult males in the settlement of Mundgod, South India. As shocking as the alleged crime was the revelation that the Mundgod camp officer and settlement officer had encouraged the father of the child not to pursue criminal charges against the men. Why?
In the past months there's been a seismic shift in how Google is perceived by the media, government and public in the UK. From being pretty much universally loved and admired as a bastion of corporate goodness Google now finds itself mocked for its "Don't Be Evil" slogan and accused of either condoning or facilitating a range of despicable deeds...
Dealing with gender inequality starts with tackling the root causes of all forms of violence against women and girls (VAWG) such as female genital mutilation (FGM). As long as these inequalities are not dealt with, the participation and empowerment of girls is not possible and the eradication of poverty remains a dream, where half of society is harmed for the [supposed] benefit of the remainder.
Charity chiefs have warned that the scandal surrounding BBC Newsnight's investigation into the child abuse which took place at a Welsh care home, lead...