The Royal Borough of Greenwich is launching a campaign in partnership with the NSPCC to tackle neglect, the most common form of child abuse.
Neglect Matters aims to raise awareness of the signs and symptoms so that more people speak up if they have concerns about a child. These include constantly feeling hungry, being left alone for long periods of time, untreated injuries and poor social skills.
Neglect is the ongoing failure to meet a child’s basic needs and could mean that they are put in danger, are not protected from physical or emotional harm or are not given proper clothing. It can affect anyone, regardless of background, can take many forms and affect all age groups, from a baby not having their basic needs met to a teenager where no-one cares where they are or who they are with. A neglected child will often suffer from other abuse as well and it can lead to serious, long-term damage – even death.
The Royal Borough of Greenwich’s Neglect Matters campaign will include workshops to educate parents, information sessions with school pupils, an update of online materials and a poster campaign.
Council staff, GPs, police officers and early help practitioners will all receive training to ensure that they know how to spot the signs of abuse.
Councillor Miranda Williams, Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, said: “No child should ever have to experience neglect but the reality is that neglect is the most prevalent form of child abuse both nationally and here in the Royal Borough of Greenwich.
“The Neglect Matters campaign will help raise awareness and ensure that signs and symptoms of neglect are not missed - meaning vital action to protect our children and young people is taken sooner rather than later.
“We all have a role to play in preventing abuse. Even if you do not directly work for an agency that helps children, simply passing on your concerns can improve a child’s life.”
The campaign will officially launch at the Great Get Together at the Royal Artillery Barracks Field in Woolwich. The event, which is on 24 June and runs from 11am to 6pm, will give visitors access to information and advice on neglect.
The Greenwich Safeguarding Children’s Board website includes details of who to contact if you are concerned about a child’s safety or wellbeing.
- For more information, visit www.greenwichsafeguardingchildren.org.uk
- Use the hashtag #NeglectMatters to spread the word about the campaign on social media.