‘Protecting Children and Young People from Harm and Abuse – Recognition and Response’ by Rita Hannah Langton and Siobhan Maclean

Protecting Children and Young People from Harm and Abuse: Recognition and Response is aimed at all professional students training to work with children and young people to enhance their skills in recognising and acting on suspicion or evidence of abuse or harm. As such it can be used as a training manual, covering the National Standards laid down for care and child care.

The book provides information about recent legislation and children’s rights. It touches on the worst potential outcomes for children and young people – the death of a child through abuse or harm. It relates the concern about institutional care and standards in a number of well-known cases where older children were subjected to neglect, physical harm and systematic abuse.

The third section in the book looks at how we can understand the issues of abuse. It lists symptoms and resultant behaviours which may be associated with victimisation. It refers to the problems within specific cultures or racial groups and how these must also be addressed with the child in mind at all times.

The role of the professional is identified and emphasised as initially a generic responsibility that everyone in the community must accept. It then becomes more specific. It urges students to become familiar with the codes of practice and policies that govern their specific profession and workplace. It identifies the importance of recording and reporting and sharing of information.

The final section mentions the importance of support for the professional and how this support can be obtained.

This is a very practical work book for those learning about the potential of abuse of children and young people. There is nothing new here, but I do not consider this was the authors’ primary concern. What they have produced is a very solid, comprehensive directory for checking out signs and symptoms, how to pass on concerns and the responsibilities of the individual and the professional. It is written in a down-to-earth style with enough referencing and quotations for anyone completing an academic qualification to feel reassured that there will be plenty of further reading material available.

This can be shared with colleagues and would form a very good basis for a training session in a workplace where there are children and young people to be looked after.

I am heartened by reference to my own book although I suspect it is now a bit out of date! I would recommend this book as a good basis to begin learning about this distressing aspect of child care.

Langton, Rita Hannah and Maclean, Siobhan (2010?) Protecting Children and Young People from Harm and Abuse: Recognition and Response

Kirwin Maclean Associates Ltd

ISBN: 9-781-90357-561-1

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