Major success in the fight to keep children safe

The Government has announced 3 important policy changes that'll help protect children

Gavel illustrationThe Government has recently committed to:

  • improving internet safety in the UK to ensure better protection for children online
  • making Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) mandatory in all schools in England
  • stopping plans that meant local authorities in England could gain exemption from children's social care law.

We couldn't have done it without you

This is fantastic news and a vital step in keeping more children safe from abuse and neglect. We've campaigned hard for these changes and to influence government. But we couldn't have done it without the help of our amazing supporters.

This is a huge success for children. But it isn't the end. We'll continue to work closely with the Government to make sure the detail and implementation of these policies give children the greatest protection possible.

What are the policy changes?

1. Developing better protection for children online

Led by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), the Government has launched a major drive to improve internet safety for children.

Ministers have begun work on a new Internet Safety Strategy aiming to make the UK the safest place in the world for children and young people to be online. We're expecting a Green Paper outlining the Government's proposals later this year.

This announcement follows the Government's commitment to make the internet a safer place for children. The Digital Economy Bill will block overseas pornographic sites which don't adhere to age verification restrictions.

This is a huge success for our campaign to ensure equal protection for children online and offline and follows the launch of our Safe Internet Explorers campaign last month, asking supporters to email the Culture Secretary to demand better protection for children online.

2. Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) will be delivered in all schools in England

The Government has announced that RSE will be made mandatory in all schools in England, including primaries, academies and independents. 

This has been one of our longstanding policy calls and over the last 9 months, we’ve intensively lobbied the Government to ensure it was included in the Children and Social Work Bill. Young people themselves supported us by writing directly to PM Theresa May and Justine Greening, Secretary of State for Education, to demand this change. 

The efforts of our campaign, alongside those of other charities, gives scope for a broad, age-appropriate PSHE curriculum to be introduced in the future.

This is a huge success that’ll help give children the knowledge they need to stay safe. We're now working to ensure detailed and effective implementation of these plans.

3. Protecting children's safeguarding

The Government has recently been debating the need for innovation in the provision of children's services. They argued that the only way to achieve this would be to allow local authorities in England to gain exemptions from children's social care law in order to test new methods of social work. 

This was a dangerous attack on basic children's rights. And so we're delighted that the Government has agreed to remove these proposals from the Children and Social Work Bill.

We believe innovation is important - but never at the expense of keeping children safe.