The UK Government has defined the term ‘safeguarding children’ as: ‘The process of protecting children from abuse or neglect, preventing impairment of their health and development, and ensuring they are growing up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care that enables children to have optimum life chances and enter adulthood successfully.’
To be able to safeguard children effectively we need to be aware of the following policies:
Children Act 1984 with the following additions
The Every Child Matters (ECM) 2003
Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006
Protection of Children Act
Working Together to Safeguard Children March 2013
This shift from traditional child protection to a more all-encompassing approach were influenced by the first Joint Chief Inspectors’ safeguarding children report (2002) and the Victoria Climbié Inquiry (2003). The Every Child Matters programme outlined in the Children Act 2004 formalised these changes in approach into a legislative framework.
Every Child Matters (ECM) is a UK government initiative for England and Wales, that was launched in 2003, at least partly in response to the death of Victoria Climbié. It is one of the most important policy initiatives and development programmes in relation to children and children's services of the last decade, and has been described as a "sea change" to the children and families agenda. It has been the title of three government papers, leading to the Children Act 2004. Every Child Matters covers children and young adults up to the age of 19, or 24 for those with disabilities.
Its main aims are for every child, whatever their background or circumstances, to have the support they need to: SHEEP
Enjoy and achieve
Each of these themes has a detailed framework attached whose