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One in five failed to act over child abuse

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One in five failed to act over child abuse

One in five adults did not act when concerned about a child being abused or neglected, according to a survey.

The findings of the YouGov poll, conducted for the NSPCC, show 30% of UK adults have had concerns that made them think a child may be experiencing abuse or neglect, but of these around one in five did not take any action.

For those who did not voice concerns, 38% said they did not report suspicions because they were not sure what was happening was abuse, 37% said they could not prove their theory, 32% said they were worried they had misinterpreted and 29% thought it would make the situation worse.

The NSPCC commissioned YouGov to survey 3,999 adults between January 3 and 5 as part of its Listen up, Speak up campaign, which aims to teach adults what to do in a scenario where a child could be at risk.

NSPCC chief executive Sir Peter Wanless said: “All of us come across children in our daily lives, be this in our neighbourhoods, at our places of work, on our commute or at the supermarket.

“At the NSPCC we understand it can be hard to know what to do in a situation where you have a niggling concern about a child’s wellbeing.

“Findings from our survey show 73% agree that there is a lack of training on what individuals can do to prevent child abuse and neglect, which is where our Listen up, Speak up programme can help.

“In just 10 minutes, you can equip yourself with a little bit of knowledge which can go a long way in helping to keep children and young people safe.”

The campaign encourages people to complete 10-minute digital training or take part in a local workshop being delivered in schools, businesses and community organisations across the UK.

Participants are taught some of the signs a child might be at risk, how to approach difficult conversations and who to contact if they are concerned about a child or their family.

Further contact shares more advice on how to listen to and support children and families, and will introduce some helpful services and resources such as the NSPCC helpline.

This includes advice on everyday challenges families may be facing, such as bonding with their baby, parental mental health and keeping their children safe online.

The charity says more than 25,000 people have so far signed up to Listen up, Speak up.

An NSPCC real life story volunteer, who is an advocate of Listen up, Speak up, said: “When I was in a perilous position at five months old, the community came to my rescue. One lady immediately gave me the baby food I urgently needed.

“This was followed by presents of clothes from others in the street. One neighbour eventually adopted me. Along with the authorities, my local community played a vitally important role in my welfare.

“They didn’t wait or debate or decide it wasn’t their business. They intervened and it meant I am here today.”

The NSPCC is a children’s charity committed to ending child abuse in the UK and Channel Islands which relies on voluntary donations for 90% of its funding.

Published: by Radio NewsHub

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