Keeping children safe
It is our responsibility as child carers to keep children whom we care for safe.
You can identify harm in four different ways,
Physical: when a child is deliberately hurt. It most certainly is not an accident. Children who are physically abused are punched kicked hit burned or even poisoned babies could have dislocated bones, broken bones or even head injuries.
Sexual: when a child is forced or influenced to take part in sexual activity. This could be physical or nonphysical e.g. showing a child indecent images. Most children will not know they are being sexually abused as they do not understand what is right and what is wrong at a young age. The abuser will make the child think it is normal.
Emotional: when a child is made to feel worthless unloved or frightened. It can be shouting or threating a child. It can also be when a child sees someone using violence in their home. Either being their parents or visitors. Or when a child sees their parents arguing.
Neglect: this is when a child is not being care for in the appropriate manner by their parents or carer. i.e. poor hygiene, poor diet, poor school attendance, being left on their own.
There are warning signs for children that are being physically, sexually, emotionally abused or neglected. Some of these signs to look out for are:
Physical abuse warning signs, symptoms and indicators Patterned injuries that keep reoccurring in the same place. Or this could be marks of a hand or belt.
Is always on “edge” when someone raises their hand the child is jumpy as if their waiting for something bad to happen
Apprehensive or seems afraid to go home.
Emotional abuse warning signs, symptoms and indicators Withdrawal from parents
Always fearful of doing something wrong
Throws tantrums acts out (bad behaviour)
Sexual abuse warning signs, symptoms and indicators Avoids wanting to be around a certain person
Contracts an STD or falls pregnant under the age of 14
Has trouble walking or sitting
Displays inappropriate behaviour and is knowing of sexual acts
Runs away from home
Becomes very secluded
Neglect warning signs, symptoms and indicators Dirty clothes
Lack of concentration
Talk of being left alone
Constant illnesses not being treated
Domestic abuse warning signs and indicators Bedwetting
Constant complaints of headaches or tummy pains
Falling asleep at school or in someone else’s care due to listening to parents arguing all night.
Excessive diarrhea from stress