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Rights of the Child

Joseph Rowntree Foundation:
Child Poverty Updates

The JRF has published a number of detailed reports on the social cost of child poverty. To learn more about the reports and read them in full online, please click here to visit the Joseph Rowntree Foundation child poverty website.

New research:
social housing and childhood disadvantage

This study shows that the gap between children growing up in social housing and those in other types of housing is now wider than it has ever been. Comparing the experiences of four generations, it is clear that those living in social housing have become more disadvantaged and that these disadvantages persist into adulthood.

However, the research suggests that most of these disadvantages arise from the other characteristics of families, rather than being caused by living in social housing. Rather than focusing purely on housing policy, it is clear that wider policies to tackle poverty and support disadvantaged families are vital to improving the life chances of children growing up in social housing.

The research was jointly funded by the Tenant Services Authority, Scottish Government and Joseph Rowntree Foundation.

Click here to read ‘Growing up in social housing in Britain: A profile of four generations from 1946 to the present day’

Detaining children in Britain:
No place for the innocent

(Paul Vallely, The Independent)

"What kind of country drags vulnerable children from their beds at daybreak, puts them behind bars and fills them with terror?

Paul Vallely meets a family who have endured this horror - in Britain. And they're not alone

The thundering knock came early in the morning. It was 6.30am. Without waiting for an answer the security chain across the door was smashed from its fittings. Feet thundered up the staircase. The five children, all under the age of 10, were alarmed to be woken from their sleep by the dozen burly strangers who burst into their bedrooms, switched on the lights and shouted at them to get up.

This is not a police state. It is Manchester in supposedly civilised Britain in the 21st century. There is a clue to what this is about in the names of the children: Nardin, who is 10; Karin who is seven; the three-year-old twins Bishoy and Anastasia, and their one-year-old baby sister Angela."

Full story: Independent, Tuesday, 12 January 2010

The Rights of the Child

There are are 1.5 million people living on the Gaza strip. Half of them are children. During the Israeli attack on Gaza at least 50 children have been killed. Once again we are witness to the fact that children and young people are amongst the most vulnerable in society. They number highest amongst the victims of poverty, gross exploitation and war throughout the globe. We affirm unconditional commitment to the UN Convention of the Rights of the Child.

Click here to read the Convention.

Updated: the UK government's treatment of the children of asylum seekers in detention is 'abusive' and 'dehumanising', it has been claimed. Click here to read more.

The Howard League's Growing Up, Shut Up campaign is dedicated to improving the welfare of the more than 3,000 children in British prisons and those in other areas of the legal system.

To visit the Howard League website and learn more about this campaign, please click here.

The charity Barnardo's has recently released a report called Breaking the Cycle. This is an extract from their research into attitudes of and about young people:

Research conducted by YouGov shows that:

  • just under half (49%) of people believe that children are increasingly a danger to each other and adults
  • 43% agree something has to be done to protect us from children
  • 45% think that children are feral in the way they behave.

A survey conducted amongst Barnardo’s young people – just over half of whom have been in trouble – found that most of them thought that young people get into trouble because of boredom and peer pressure.  
Of the 393 youngsters, aged between 10 and 23:

  • 44% said bad behaviour is encouraged when the media portrays their peers as misbehaving
  • 84% said young people get into trouble because of boredom
  • 88% said having more things to do and places to go might stop young people getting into trouble
  • 32% would go to friends for help if they were in trouble.

To view the full contents of the survey and read the Breaking the Cycle report, please click here to visit the Barnardo's website.

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