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Are we over-protecting children?

Are over-protective paranoid adults unintentionally restricting children’s social and psychological development, and creating a nation of cotton-wool kids?


Following the Baby P tragedy, child protection is in the spotlight again. As politicians and pundits suggest myriad new procedures to prevent future deaths, is society in danger of becoming over-obsessed with child safety, when in truth such terrible events are rare? The widespread vetting of adults who work with children was designed to weed out paedophiles, but has resulted in many volunteers resigning rather than undergo demeaning criminal records checks. In a climate of mistrust, childcare workers and teachers think twice before comforting a child with a hug, or putting a plaster on a grazed knee. Meanwhile, parental concern about their offspring’s safety means children rarely play unsupervised outdoors. Are over-protective paranoid adults unintentionally restricting children’s social and psychological development, and creating a nation of cotton-wool kids? Is risk aversion damaging children, or should children’s safety trump all other concerns?

Speakers include:

Christopher Cloke, Head of Child Protection and Diversity at the NSPCC

Hugh Thornbery, Strategic Director of Children's Services, Action for Children

Dr Helene Guldberg, author, Reclaiming Childhood – freedom and play in an age of fear; lecturer in developmental psychology with the Open University and the US study abroad centres, CAPA and IES

Dr Ken McLaughlin, lecturer in social work at Manchester Metropolitan University; author, Social Work, Politics and Society: from radicalism to orthodoxy

Chair - Claire Fox, Director, Institute of Ideas; panelist, BBC Radio 4’s Moral Maze


Speaker(s):

Christopher Cloke | talks
Dr Ken McLaughlin | talks
Hugh Thornberry | talks
Dr Helene Guldberg | talks
. Claire Fox | talks | www

 

Date and Time:

24 March 2009 at 7:00 pm

Duration:

1 hour 30 minutes

 

Venue:

Galsworthy Building, Kingston University
Penrhyn Road
Kingston Upon Thames
KT1 2EE
0208 547 5205 (answe
http://www.kingston.gov.uk/think-in-kingston
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Organised by:

Institute of Ideas
See other talks organised by Institute of Ideas...

 

Tickets:

Free

Available from:

Reservation required. Book via http://www.kingston.gov.uk/think-in-kingston or 020 8547 5205 (answerphone only)

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