Question 1) Understand the main legislation, guidelines, polices and procedures for safeguarding children and young people.
There is no single piece of legislation that covers child protection in the UK, but rather a collection of laws and guidance that are continually being amended, updated and revoked. Laws are amended by new legislation passed by Westminster, the Welsh Assembly Government, the Northern Ireland Assembly and the Scottish Parliament. This is known as statutory law, but laws also have to be interpreted by the courts. The way in which courts interpret laws is known as case law, and this can also have the effect of amending statutory law. It should also be noted that not all laws cover all parts of the England, Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland, and that the legal systems vary in the different areas.
Legislation covering child protection can be divided into two main categories: Civil law is divided into public and private law.
Public law puts in place systems and processes in order to minimise the risk of children coming to harm and lays out what action should be taken if children are at risk. Private law deals with family proceedings such as divorce and contact Criminal law deals with people who have offended or are at risk of offending against children. In practice, some Acts may include both provisions that relate to civil law and provisions that relate to criminal law.
Since the NSPCC was founded in 1884, it has played a key role in influencing and drafting legislation to protect children. All off the legislation listed below has been over seen by the NSPCC and the relevant parties to put this in place for the over all safeguarding of children and young people.
The Children and Young Persons Act 1933 is one of the older pieces of child protection legislation, which has parts that are still in force today. It includes a list of offences against children, which are referred to as Schedule One offences, these are: Rape of a girl under 18
Procurement of a girl under 18 by threats
Procurement of a girl under 18 by false pretences
Administering drugs to a girl under 18 to obtain or facilitate intercourse Intercourse with a girl under 13
Intercourse with a girl between 13 and 16
Intercourse with a mentally deficient girl under 18
Incest by a male against a female where the victim is under 18 Incest by a woman where the victim is under 18
Buggery with a person under 16
Indecency between men where one or both are under 16
Indecent assault on a girl under 18
Indecent assault on a male under 18
Assault with intent to commit buggery
Abduction of an unmarried girl under 18 from parent or guardian Abduction of an unmarried girl under 16 from parent or guardian Causing prostitution of a girl under 18
Procuration of a girl under 18
Detention of a girl under 18 in a brothel or other premises Permitting a girl under 13 to use premises for intercourse
Permitting a girl between 13 and 16 to use premises for intercourse Causing or encouraging prostitution of, intercourse with, or indecent assault on a girl under 16. The Children Act 1989
The current child protection system is based on the Children Act 1989, which was introduced in an effort to reform and clarify the existing number of laws affecting children. This was hailed at the time as “the most comprehensive and far-reaching reform of child law which has come before Parliament in living memory” by the then Lord Chancellor Lord Mackay of Clashfern, it enshrined a number of principles these are: The paramountcy principle which means that a child’s welfare is paramount when making any decisions about a child’s upbringing. The court must also ascertain the wishes and feelings of the child and shall not make an Order unless this is “better for the child than making no Order at all”. Every effort should be made to preserve the child’s home and family links. It introduced the concept of parental responsibility which...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document