ChildLinks Issue 2: Child Protection

Barnardos. (2006). ChildLinks Issue 2: Child Protection.
The theme of this issue of Childlinks is Child Protection. As I write this editorial, the Government has announced the Childcare (pre-school services) regulations 2006. Barnardos welcomes the inclusion of requirements that all staff, students and volunteers in the service will be Garda vetted. In order for this to be implemented from January 2007, additional resources will need to be made available to the Garda Central Vetting Unit to enable speedy processing of applications. Another significant development has been the recent report by the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, which recommended that the constitution be changed to more fully protect children in Ireland. Barnardos believes that it is important that both the rights of children and families are respected in the constitution and is totally committed to securing an express commitment to children’s rights in the constitution. Barnardos also welcomes the UN Committee recommendations that the State should ensure that social work services are provided to families and children at risk on a 24/7 basis and that the state should develop a comprehensive child abuse prevention strategy, including in particular putting the Children’s First Guidelines on a statutory basis. Child Protection is a complex subject and is a key issue for early years’ services, and for parents. As Dr Helen Buckley concludes in her article, it is the managed combination of diverse skills, resources and expertise that offers the best possibilities for children whose needs are not being otherwise met. Good professional practice in early years' settings is the most effective means of keeping children safe from abuse. This edition of Childlinks explores many of these issues from the academic, policy and practitioner perspectives. Child Protection is everybody's business.