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This week has been Child Safety Awareness Week run by the Child Action Prevention Trust. Throughout the course of the week we have run a series of blogs focusing on child safety and how it can be enhanced.
Risks to children exist in everyday life whether that be by way of accident, injury, exposure to content in social media or other online resource or more targeted harm in the form of physical or sexual violence.
The Child Action Prevention Trust attempts to raise awareness of injuries being suffered by children and offers guidance on working together as a community to prevent injury to children, who are one of the most vulnerable groups in society. The State of Child Health: One year on reviews progress across a range of key child health indicators and recommendations. Its conclusions reveal progress in some areas but concerns about the lack of improvement in ‘several fundamental areas’ including the lack of plans for an overarching child health strategy and the lack of increased investment in child health research. In addition, the greatest areas of concern are ‘the deepening public health cuts which have worsened in the last year and are disproportionately affecting children’s services’.
Aspects of the scorecard which show ‘no change’ include funding to enable local authorities to deliver health visiting services and home safety equipment schemes, with a focus on water safety, blind cord safety and safe sleeping. ‘No change’ is also recorded for the recommendation that local authorities should introduce 20mph speed limits in built up areas to create safer environments for children to walk, cycle and play. The impact of funding cuts on action to reduce child poverty and inequality is highlighted.
It is therefore of paramount importance to raise families’ awareness, forge partnerships and put child accident prevention on the local agenda. This is an area of focus that cannot be ignored. Child safety from every angle must be highlighted and considered to enable and tackle improvement.