Thursday, June 26, 2008

Frank Furedi and Licensed to Hug

The report that Furedi has written for the think tank Civitas has received a lot of publicity today. There is a good article on it by Furedi and Jennie Bristow on the New Statesman site, and you can find links to other media coverage on the Civitas blog.

As that blog says:
The dramatic escalation of child protection measures has succeeded in poisoning the relationship between the generations and creating an atmosphere of suspicion that actually increases the risks to children, according to a new study released today by Civitas.

In Licensed to Hug Frank Furedi, Professor of Sociology at the University of Kent, argues that children need to have contact with a range of adult members of the community for their education and socialisation, but 'this form of collaboration, which has traditionally underpinned intergenerational relationships, is now threatened by a regime that insists that adult/child encounters must be mediated through a security check' (p.xii).

The scope of child protection has become immense. Since its formation in 2002 the Criminal Records Bureau has issued 15 million disclosures, but the whole operation has now been ratcheted up several notches by the passage of the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006. This has led to the creation of the Independent Safeguarding Authority which, when it is rolled out in October 2009, will require CRB checks of 11.3 million people - over one quarter of the adult population of England.
This is an issue that the Spiked set - quite rightly - has been banging on about for some time. Their arguments inspired one of my House Points columns a couple of years ago.

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