This report compiles the most robust and up-to-date child protection data that exists across each of the four nations in the UK.
It sets out 20 different indicators. Each indicator looks at the question of "how safe are our children?" from a different perspective. It also includes a section summarising the factors that influence a child's risk of abuse or neglect.
The report allows us not only to understand how many children are being abused and neglected, but also to track progress so that society can be held to account for its responsibility to children. Only by monitoring the extent of child abuse and neglect in the UK can we judge whether efforts to prevent maltreatment and to protect children are working.
Insufficient early support services, more families struggling financially and higher thresholds have turned child protection into an emergency service, only able to react to the most serious cases.
See the demand and expenditure infographic
Safeguarding and protecting children extends far beyond children's social care, into a wide range of services that are provided by public, private and third sector organisations.
See the child protection system infographic
We also need to spend smarter, making sure we invest up front in stopping families slipping into abusive or neglectful behaviour by focussing on risk factors that influence a child's risk of suffering abuse or neglect. This is far more effective in protecting children and costs less in the long run.
See the risk infographic
Visit the How safe are our children? The 20 indicators page for:
Please cite as: Jütte, S., Bentley, H., Miller, P. and Jetha, N. (2014) How safe are our children? London: NSPCC. Available at: www.nspcc.org.uk/howsafe