Child Protection

Tragedy of Callum Wilson Highlights Risks Faced by Children Returning From Care

Tom Rahilly | Posted 04.04.2014 | UK
Tom Rahilly

Improvements to the support we give these children must be seen as a priority by Government and local authorities. Without this children like Callum are likely to continue to be harmed and the revolving door of care will continue to affect too many young lives every year.

Emotional Abuse Cannot Be Ignored - and Now Children Have the Law on Their Side

Sir Tony Hawkhead | Posted 31.03.2014 | UK
Sir Tony Hawkhead

At Action for Children, we have reached a huge milestone - following our three-year campaign and thanks to the Ministry of Justice, the legal definition of child cruelty will include emotional as well as physical harm. This new law will change lives. I've met children and young people who have suffered intolerable emotional abuse at the hands of people who are supposed to love them most.

New Depths of Depravity in Online Child Abuse Images Utterly Shocking

Jonathan Wheeler | Posted 14.03.2014 | UK
Jonathan Wheeler

Government plans to use a central image database to identify abusers and their victims are welcome and with millions of these images already in circulation, there is no time to waste. Reports that a growing number of young children are subject to perverse sexual abuse through online imagery are truly appalling.

Making Children Pay for Their Healthcare Poses Significant Risks

Peter Grigg | Posted 11.03.2014 | UK Politics
Peter Grigg

We are calling on the government to rethink its proposals to ensure that all children and young people have access to free healthcare while they are in the UK when they need it, regardless of where they're from or who their parents are.

South Sudan: Give Peace (and Children) a Chance!

Unni Krishnan | Posted 07.03.2014 | UK
Unni Krishnan

In a group of 100 children, singing, playing and some crying, two girls stand out. Their names are Madiha, 9, and Lina, 4. It is not their unusual silence that catches my attention, but the way they frequently hug each other, often involuntarily...

Protecting Children Online - Is There a Silver Bullet?

Jacob Tas | Posted 30.03.2014 | UK
Jacob Tas

Discussions about online filters focus on the privacy and civil liberties of adults. In the child protection sector, however, we are not losing sight of the fact that while these optional household filters are far from a silver bullet for keeping children safe online, they certainly help.

It's Been a Positive Year in Tackling Child Abuse, and Your New Year's Resolution Could Make Next Year Even Better

Peter Wanless | Posted 02.03.2014 | UK
Peter Wanless

How about a resolution that will change other people's lives and yours too? ChildLine is urgently seeking volunteers to go into schools to talk directly with nine-11-year-old children about different forms of abuse and about staying safe. You don't need any previous experience and you will be given first class training and support.

Councils in Denial Over Extent of Child Sexual Exploitation

Andy McCullough | Posted 26.01.2014 | UK Politics
Andy McCullough

"If only someone had listened..." is the final report of the Office of the Children's Commissioner's two-year national inquiry into child sexual exploitation by gangs and groups, and presents a compelling case for a "sea change" in the culture of children's services so victims' needs are prioritised...

We Cannot Allow Any Child to Disappear

Peter Wanless | Posted 23.01.2014 | UK
Peter Wanless

It's absolutely right that the national media crawl all over what happened to Hamzah Khan. Anyone who cares about children will be horrified by the detail of his suffering and will see clearly many moments when he might have been noticed. But it's not enough simply to cry that "lessons must be learned". We must ensure that they are.

We All Need to Do More to Make Sure Abused Children Are Heard

Peter Wanless | Posted 23.01.2014 | UK
Peter Wanless

Imagine you were desperate to tell people about something but when you tried no sound came out. Like you'd had some awful spell cast on you that meant only you could hear the words. That's how I think it might feel to be a child who has suffered abuse but struggles to find adults who will act upon their concerns.

To Catch a Predator

Rob McDowall | Posted 27.11.2013 | UK Lifestyle
Rob McDowall

No loving parent would dream of opening their doors to a sex offender hell-bent on manipulating and exploiting their child but with the increasing availability and use of modern technology, a parents' ignorance could inadvertently do just that.

From Litter to Daniel Pelka to Syria, Are We in Danger of Becoming a 'Walk on By' Society?

Alex Ford | Posted 18.11.2013 | UK Politics
Alex Ford

I am no longer in the military, and I have noticed something. Something worrying, disturbing. A creeping selfishness. A walk-on-by attitude. A somebody else's problem out look where if something doesn't directly effect someone, they will do nothing about it.

Are Child Protection Rules Helping Paedophiles?

The Huffington Post/UK | Posted 13.09.2013 | UK

Secrecy rules surrounding children in care homes might have helped paedophile groups to target them, Michael Gove has said. The education secretary...

Children and Youth in West Africa Mobilise Against Violence

Davinder Kumar | Posted 01.11.2013 | UK
Davinder Kumar

From the arid landscape of Mali to the tropical rainforests of Cameroon, they have travelled thousands of miles and traversed 13 countries in West and Central Africa between them to find out what governments and world institutions are doing to protect children and young people from violence....

Boarding School Teacher Jailed For Abusing Boys

PA | Posted 16.08.2013 | UK

A teacher at a private boarding school has been jailed for three years after pleading guilty to abusing pupils as young as seven years old. Nichola...

Government Spin Alone Won't Protect Our Children

Hayley Meachin | Posted 09.10.2013 | UK Politics
Hayley Meachin

Following the conviction of Magdelena Luczak and Mariusz Krezolek for the murder of four-year-old Daniel Pelka, deputy prime minister Nick Clegg said: "his death should be on all of our consciences." This is not a sentiment likely to be echoed by the media or the general public, who perhaps understandably lay the blame squarely on the professionals whose job it is to protect children. In the media blitz that accompanied the conviction, Mr Clegg and former children's minister Tim Loughton rushed to reassure the public that the government is doing everything possible to "reduce complexity and bureaucracy" in the child protection system, and that deaths like Daniel's are isolated cases. Government spin belies the reality of child protection.

The BBFC at 100: A New Cutting Edge

David Cooke | Posted 10.09.2013 | UK Entertainment
David Cooke

We launched our Annual Report on Thursday 11 July, as we regularly do at this time of year. The report looks back at the activities of the previous year, including key strands of work as well as individual film classification decisions at each of the BBFC classification categories.

A Small Conversation Can Make a Big Difference

Peter Wanless | Posted 06.09.2013 | UK
Peter Wanless

Four out of five parents of five-17-year-olds who agreed to take part in a YouGov poll also told us they think it is their responsibility to talk to their children about the risk. Yet half of all parents surveyed have never done this. And those that did tended to focus on 'stranger danger.'

Why Vince Cable Is Wrong About Content Policing

Daniel Foster | Posted 13.08.2013 | UK Politics
Daniel Foster

It is both right and proper that stringent measures should be put in place to put an end to child pornography online. But Vince Cable's reactionary plan for Google and other search engines to police content in the wake of the convictions of Mark Bridger and Stuart Hazell is at best oversimplifying a very complex issue and at worst, a cynical ploy to absolve the coalition government of any immediate responsibility.

Horrific Child Abuse Stories Could Actually Be a Cause for Optimism

Peter Watt | Posted 04.08.2013 | UK
Peter Watt

The last few weeks, indeed the last seven months, have been completely unprecedented in terms of the media focus on child abuse. It's hard to believe, and just as hard to read, the plethora of shocking stories... However, I believe some of this is simply coincidence but some gives me reason to be optimistic. Yes, I really did say optimistic. Rather than view all the reports of these horrific cases as a sign that things are getting worse, we should actually be pleased that they are being exposed, that they are being discussed and that offenders are being taken to court.

Mairead Philpott To Appeal Against 17 Year Sentence

PA/The Huffington Post UK | Posted 19.05.2013 | UK

Mairead Philpott, jailed for 17 years for killing her six children in a house fire, is to appeal against the length of her sentence, her lawyer has sa...

Looking at Indecent Images of Children IS Child Abuse

Jon Brown | Posted 14.07.2013 | UK
Jon Brown

Stuart Hazell, 37, was a man with a violent and scarred background which is nothing unusual in such crimes. But, tellingly, he also had an addiction to images of children being sexually abused. Police discovered hundreds of such pictures on his computer hard drive. He had also visited websites searching under 'illegal incest pics' and 'sex with young children'.

Labour Could Ban Adverts Targeted At Kids, Says Cruddas

PA/ The Huffington Post UK | Posted 14.05.2013 | UK

Labour will examine a Swedish-style ban on adverts targeted at youngsters as part of efforts to tackle the commercialisation of childhood, the party's...

World Responsible Tourism Awards to Champion Child Protection in Tourism

Lara Solomon | Posted 28.06.2013 | UK Lifestyle
Lara Solomon

The protection of children from labour and sexual exploitation in tourism is a serious problem, too rarely mentioned in the press or considered by holidaymakers when seeking new experiences abroad.

Ministerial Proposals Are Good News for Children Missing From Care

Matthew Reed | Posted 25.06.2013 | UK
Matthew Reed

Going missing is a critical warning sign that something is wrong in a child's life. Yet evidence revealed that professionals are often slow to respond. This is exacerbated by professionals too often viewing children as the problem - routinely dismissing them as 'troublesome' or 'streetwise'.