Charity calls for reform on child neglect laws

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Christiesgal's picture
Joined: 29/07/2011 - 13:46
Posts: 11233
Charity calls for reform on child neglect laws

A children's charity has called for the law on child neglect to be overhauled.

Action for Children claims the current law focuses too much on prosecuting parents rather than on intervening to protect children from harm.

A survey for the charity suggests many parents are unclear about their legal responsibilities to children.

Children's Minister Tim Loughton said the government had made it clear that services must act more swiftly to safeguard children.

The 1933 Children and Young Persons Act, England and Wales, makes it a criminal offence to fail to provide a child with adequate food, clothing, medical aid or lodging - but the charity says that modern conceptions of neglect also include emotional and educational issues.

It is calling on the government to order a review of the law during this Parliament.

Dame Clare Tickell, chief executive of Action for Children said: "Neglect is the most common form of child abuse affecting children in the UK yet we have an outdated law which does not reflect what we now understand children need and what neglect actually is

Long overdue or a waste of money?

Very worrying that some parents are unclear on their legal responsibilites to their children!

ursh x

Fredd's picture
Joined: 26/11/2009 - 13:44
Posts: 11361

so not many years back social services were slammed for spending too much time trying to support parents and not enough time in protecting/removing the children...

Maybe anopther step forward to compulsory parenting classes for all parents....

OliversArmy's picture
Joined: 26/11/2009 - 13:45
Posts: 12082

Long overdue, I think. Too many children are left in homes where they're not given what anyone would consider a good start. To begin with you have to wonder why those people chose to become parents in the first place, and tackle that so that the following generations are encuraged away from making similar mistakes. 

And for parents who do show themselves to be lacking, I agree that compulsory classes might work. In fact, compulsory classes for everyone, that way nobody can get all 'human rights' about being deemed a crap parent (though when I rule the country I shall tattoo the foreheads of every shite parent so that the whole world can see their crapness). 

I know in reality it's not so easy as swooping in and removing a child from it's natural parents; you've got nowhere near enough adoptive families, foster carers are in short supply and no child should be in a childrens home for even a single day, plus you have the effect of such an upheaval on the child. But yes, in an ideal world and putting the details aside, it should be easier to prosecute parents who do inflict neglect on their children, no matter their excuses, and it ought to be far easier to remove a child from such homes. Parenting doesn't come naturally to many people (in fact there's nobody I know who doesn't have bad days with their children) but you try and try and try, every single day for the rest of eternity, because that's the choice you make when you choose to procreate. For those who don't bother, they don't deserve the privelige of having children to call them mum or dad.