Child safety laws

 

Child safety law makes up a legal framework, of both statute and case law, designed to keep children safe by providing them with rights and penalising those who hurt them. Under child safety law legal guardians (usually the child’s parents) are seen as blameworthy if their actions are likely to cause harm or injury (physical or mental) to the child.

The responsibility of parents comes from a long history of court cases which came to define the main statutes relating to child safety law. These are the Children and Young Persons Act 1933, which created an initial standard of care for parents to be judged by; the Children Act 1989 which provided the authorities and the courts with the right to investigate and take serious action in cases where children were deemed to be in danger, and the Protection of Children Act 1999 which created a system of identifying individuals who are not suitable to work with children.

The 1933 Act placed much responsibility on the parents. The law does not see a parent’s lack of awareness regarding the possible dangers to a child as a reasonable defence. A parent that allows an unsupervised adult to spend long periods of time with their child, for instance, would not be able to claim that their child’s activities are of no interest to them.

If you are made aware of a child whose safety might be in question, you should inform the police of the material facts. If you are involved in criminal proceedings or would simply like to know more about how child safety laws work in your particular case, you can do so by seeking help from a solicitor. 

If you would like to obtain legal advice on child safety laws, Caven can put you in touch with a local family solicitor free of charge. So, if you have any questions or would like our help in finding local family / child law solicitors please call us on 08001 221 2299 or complete the web-form above.

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