NSPCC calls for Government’s child protection reforms to focus on children
The government has announced that Professor Eileen Munroe, is to conduct an independent review into the state of children's care and frontline child protection practice. Professor Munroe said that the review would focus on how to “free up” social workers from bureaucracy so they can spend more time with children and families.
NSPCC spokesperson, Diana Sutton said: “The NSPCC welcomes the Government’s review of child protection in England. It provides a golden opportunity to bring children to the front of social work practice for the first time.
“We want some of the social workers’ extra time to be spent alone with children. Abusers can go to great lengths to conceal a child’s ill-treatment. So social workers don’t always see what’s going on through a child’s eyes.
“Reviews of the current system have found that when children are killed or seriously injured, the most significant failure involved professionals not seeing or speaking to children.
“We want the government to put a legal duty on social workers to see a child alone without their parents. Social workers would be better able to deal with uncooperative or hostile parents with the force of the law behind them.
“Social workers need more support to do their difficult job. Helping them and improving child protection must remain a political priority and a moral imperative for the new government.
The government’s announcement follows a series of high profile child abuse cases, such as that of Baby Peter.
The serious case review into the death of Baby Peter and that of other children who are killed or seriously injured will now be published in full. Children’s minister Tim Loughton has written to all local authorities in England to request this happens, unless it would affect the welfare of any surviving children and their siblings.
In response the NSPCC is urging the Government to consult widely before this process begins.
NSPCC chief executive Andrew Flanagan said: "We must learn the lessons from serious case reviews. But public bodies need to exercise great care before they publish details of children’s lives. The best interests of the children and their families must always come first.
“There clearly has to be more accountability within the child protection system. The government should now talk with experts, abused children and their families on how this is best achieved.”
Join us on Facebook
Get involved on our Facebook community and share your views and stories.
Follow us on Twitter
Join the conversation and keep up-to-date with our supporters and latest news.
Are you a child?
Do you need to talk? Call ChildLine on 0800 1111 or visit us online.
Worried about a child?
Don’t wait until you’re certain. Contact our trained helpline counsellors for 24/7 help, advice and support.