Saturday 5 March 2016

Risk averse parenting

A really good article has appeared in the Scottish Daily Mail by Dr Stuart Waiton, senior lecturer in sociology and criminology at Abertay University, explaining the risk averse nature of the state`s involvement with children.

"Every professional who has any dealings with a child, or with an adult who has children, will be trained to inform the Named Person if they have any `concerns`."

"But these are not concerns about a serious risk of neglect of abuse. There are concerns about `wellbeing` - one of the most flexible and loose concepts imaginable, a definition so wide-ranging that it is possible to imagine state investigations of families based on almost anything."

"From the sun on their backs to the food they eat, the new technologies they indulge in and especially, their relationships with family and friends, almost every aspect of a child`s life is being re-imagined as a `risk`."

"Instead of at-risk children being a small minority, the presumption - say critics - is that all children are at risk."

"Parents themselves are increasingly regarded as one of the biggest risks to their own children, struggling as they are with what the architects of the Named Person scheme regard as the near-impossible burden of being a parent..."

"Our rights are being transformed from the right of privacy and autonomy to a right to receive support and surveillance from experts and risk managers to help us with the apparently impossible task of being a parent."

For a fuller treatment see Third Way Parenting and the Creation of the `Named Person` in Scotland

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