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Identify And Respond To Children And Young People At Risk

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Question:

Discuss or Identify and Respond to Children and Young People at Risk.

 

Answer:

Part 1: Child Abuse Indicator

Two long-term effects on children or young people who have been abused include developmental effects and psychological effects (Arbour, 2008). This is because brain develops in reaction to the community, caregivers, and family. Further, there is a direct link between quantity and the quality of such experiences with the development of brain. As such, children or young people who have been abused will be psychologically affected and the development of their brains will be affected in the long – term.

Child Abuse Indicator Template

Type of Abuse

Indicator 1

Indicator 2

Indicator 3

Physical abuse

Burns

Bruises

Fractures

Sexual abuse

Pain on urination

 

 

 

Pregnancy

Vaginal or penile discharge

Neglect

 

Social problems

 

 

Problems at school

Eating disorders

Emotional Abuse

 

Depression

 

 

Sleep disturbances

 

Poor self-esteem

Part 2: Protecting Children’s Rights

A duty of care connotes a legal obligation that is imposed on people needing them to adhere to the standard of reasonable care when they are undertaking any acts, which could foreseeably harm other people. It is generally the first element that has to be established before proceeding with any action in negligence (Broadhurst, Hall, Wastell, White, & Pithouse, 2010).

One can ensure the safety of children in his or her service and safeguard their rights by reporting all the disclosure or allegations of neglect, sexual abuse, and physical abuse to the Child Protection agency (Sawyer, Arney, Baghurst, Clark, Graetz, Kosky, & Rey, 2001). Another way is by sharing resources, expertise, and information with the other service providers that support the child.

It is important to maintain confidentiality when dealing with possible child abuse in order to prevent the disclosure of the name or any information, which is likely to lead to the identification of a person who has made a report (Bryant & Baldwin, 2010). This will encourage many people to report cases of child abuse without any fear or contradiction.

It is it important that professionals in Children’s Services share their concerns regarding significant risk of harm with someone in the service (for instance, notifying their supervisor), rather than dealing with the situation on their own in order to help in gathering information and reaching amicable course of action.

‘Safeguarding’, in regards to identifying and responding to children and young people at risk, connotes protection of children form maltreatment, prevention of children’s development and health, ensuring that the growth of children is in circumstances that are consistent with the provision of effective and safe care, and taking action for enabling all the children to have the best outcomes (Alderson & Morrow, 2011).).

I will help a new staff member incorporate the practice of safeguarding children into my centre by giving him tips on how to do this based on the evidence. I will also explain to him the policies we have been using as well as strategies put in place to be implemented.

I would use sensitivity and awareness to inform children of their right to be safe and involve them in decision making by helping them identify when they are not safe and suggest strategies they can use to stay safe. Children can become cognizant of the factors that are likely to violate their rights and thereby leading to their abuse. Accordingly, children will easily find ways of avoiding the factors that are likely to violate their rights.

Part 3: Recording and Reporting

Reporting:

The term ‘Mandatory reporter’ connotes a term, which is used in describing the legislative obligations, which are imposed on selected classes of individuals to report the child neglect and abuse, that are suspected, to the government authorities (Broadhurst, Hall, Wastell, White, & Pithouse, 2010). All the Australian states’ parliaments have enacted laws, which are mandatory on the same description.

Non – leading questions are type of questions, which do not make an assumption of what might have befallen a child (what might have happened to a child). In other words, they are questions that do not pre-empt for the child what he or she is supposed to say, but they rather give a description of the child’s condition or behaviour in a factual way. Two examples of non-leading questions, which I could ask a child who I believe is at risk of harm are: (1) what happened to you? (2) Do you want to tell how the situation took place?

Those who can be a mandatory reporter in my state or territory include teachers, principals, doctors, nurses including midwives, and police.

All the types of abuse are reportable in NSW include indecent assault, sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, sexual intercourse and attempted sexual intercourse, possession/ dissemination/ production of child, pornography or child abuse material, using children to produce pornography, grooming or procuring children under the age of 16 years for unlawful sexual activity, and deemed non-consensual sexual activity on the basis of special care relationships.

Recording:

Accurate recording the circumstances surrounding a possible risk of harm incident (in accordance with relevant legislation, service policies and ethics) is very necessary because it has influence on the future of the child (Erooga & Masson, 2006). Further, it is in order to accurately record such circumstances because it is very possible that I will have children in the future who could be at risk of being abused, and I would as well want accurate recording for such circumstances.

 Statement

Is this statement objective or subjective? Write you answer in the box below.

Give a reason for your answer.

 

Madeline, aged 4, looked depressed whilst playing in home corner.

 

This is a subjective statement

This is because it is someone’s opinion that Madeline, aged 4, looked depressed whilst playing in home corner. It is an opinion that Madeline looked depressed yet she may not be depressed as a matter of fact.

Tom, aged 5, held his arm saying “It hurts”.

 

 

This is an objective statement

This is because by Tom himself saying that it hurts when he held his arms, it is a fact that it hurts and not an opinion.

 

Ally, aged 9, wore long sleeves again today. She might be hiding bruises on her arms.

 

 

 

This is a subjective statement

This is because the mere fact that Ally wore long sleeves again today does not make it a reality that she is hiding bruises on her arms. She might have worn the long sleeves because it was cold.

  1. Given below it the hypothetical, anecdotal record about an incident that may have occurred in regards to a child or young person at significant risk of harm is as below.

Peter aged 23 years  intentionally slapped a tent – year old boy called Victor thereby causing bodily harm to the former in terms of bruises and swelling wounds. The incidence took place on 23rd March 2016 at Port Victoria near Koriakor.  The incidence was observed by George who is a police officer stationed at Victoria Police Station.

 

Part 4: Exchanging Information and Collaborating with Services

(i) The first example of a person that I would exchange information with about a child or young person at significant risk of harm, in addition to my director / Supervisor is a teacher. This is because teachers are generally trained to deal with children and can easily play with their psychology to extract information from them (children). As such, by exchanging information with a teacher about a child or young person at significant risk of harm, there is high likelihood that the teacher would be able to extract information from child in order to establish how the incidence happened. Another example of a person that I would exchange information with about a child or young person at significant risk of harm, in addition to my director / Supervisor is a doctor. This is because a doctor is in a position to do examination on the child to establish the magnitude of the harm caused by the abuse.

(ii) The first example of a person that I would not exchange information with about a child or young person at significant risk of harm is a drunkard. This is because they are generally not in their sober senses and may just utter insults or increase the harm to the child. Another example is anybody who has ever been charged with any child abuse offense.

The name of the organisation I would call if I suspected child abuse in my state or territory (Victoria State) is Victoria Police whose phone number is 000. If this contact is not available, I would call After Hours Child Protection Emergency Service if I suspected child abuse in my state or territory. The Phone number of the After Hours Child Protection Emergency Service is 131 278. However, they are only available between 5.00 pm to 9.00 am on Mondays to Fridays, but available 24 hours during the weekends and public holidays.

One of the relevant agency that I could exchange information with to ensure maximum effectiveness of the report After Hours Child Protection Emergency Service, as they can quickly respond to any emerging issue concerning the child abuse to ensure that the situation is dealt with amicably. Another relevant agency that I could exchange information with to ensure maximum effectiveness of the report is the Department for Child Protection, which ensures that a child is protected from any harm or abuse.

Part 5: Ethical Dilemmas

When during orientation, Ali and Han’s father, Raj, reports that I may hit Ali if she does not do the right thing, but I am not to touch his son Han, because he is the male and should be honoured, the ethical dilemma is about hitting the child. As a professional, am not ethically allowed to hit a child as a form of punishment, as physical punishment is against the law.

Based on the ethical dilemma presented above, I would inform Raj that it is unethical to hit a kid as a form of punishment. As such, in the vent I hit his daughter when she does a mistake I will be going against the ethical code of conduct required of me by the child protection policy.

In regards to the ethical concerns above, I would seek for support in my centre from two different people. These are the principal and the teacher in charge of guidance and counselling. The reason why I would do this is for them to assist in coming up with the best way in which Raj can be made aware that his assertion the daughter should be hit when she does wrong thing and the son should not be hit, but should be honoured, is unethical and discriminatory.

Three possible ethical concerns when working with children and young people and their families include the relationship between adult and a child, as some of the cultures not allow adults to talk directly to children without going through their parents; mode of greeting, as some cultures do not allow adults to shake children’s hands; and mode of punishment, as some cultures do not allow hitting of male gender.

I would you respond to unethical behaviour of others in my service by strictly following the ethical code of conduct that my type of service requires me to follow.

Part 6: Disclosures

What I would say immediately in response to Ashlee’s comments is that I will not tell mummy in order not to make her have stress, which may results into an emotional child abuse.

My legal obligation is to report this concern since it is about the safety, welfare or wellbeing of a child or young person. I would report this matter to The Executive Principal via the Head of School.

What I would say immediately in response to Eric’s comments is that I will not tell Mercy that you told me what happened. The reassurance that I will give him is that the matter will be solved amicably and Mercy will never do such a thing to him again.

My legal obligation is to deal with this matter confidentially and only disclose it to the relevant authority or as required to comply with your mandatory reporting obligations

The ethical dilemma here is the relationship between the staff members. It is expected that staff members should have a cordial relationship. However, by reporting this matter, it may be hard for me and Mercy to have a cordial relationship in case Mercy get to hear that I am the one who reported the case.

 

References

Arbour, L. (2008). The responsibility to protect as a duty of care in international law and practice. Review of International Studies, 34(03), 445-458.

Alderson, P., & Morrow, V. (2011). The ethics of research with children and young people: A practical handbook. Sage Publications Ltd.

Broadhurst, K., Hall, C., Wastell, D., White, S., & Pithouse, A. (2010). Risk, instrumentalism and the humane project in social work: Identifying the informal logics of risk management in children's statutory services. British Journal of Social Work, 40(4), 1046-1064.

Bryant, J. K., & Baldwin, P. A. (2010). School counsellors' perceptions of mandatory reporter training and mandatory reporting experiences. Child Abuse Review, 19(3), 172-186.

Erooga, M., & Masson, H. (Eds.). (2006). Children and young people who sexually abuse others: Current developments and practice responses. Routledge.

Holt, S., Buckley, H., & Whelan, S. (2008). The impact of exposure to domestic violence on children and young people: A review of the literature. Child abuse & neglect, 32(8), 797-810.

Parton, N. (2011). Child protection and safeguarding in England: Changing and competing conceptions of risk and their implications for social work. British Journal of Social Work, 41(5), 854-875.

Sawyer, M. G., Arney, F. M., Baghurst, P. A., Clark, J. J., Graetz, B. W., Kosky, R. J., ... & Rey, J. M. (2001). The mental health of young people in Australia: key findings from the child and adolescent component of the national survey of mental health and well-being. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 35(6), 806-814.

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