HELP PRE­VENT CHILD ABUSE Work­shops aim to pro­tect our lo­cal chil­dren

Work­shops aim to pre­vent child abuse and ne­glect

Central Telegraph - - FRONT PAGE - Louise Shan­non

POS­I­TIVE ac­tion and in­creased aware­ness about child pro­tec­tion is­sues are vi­tal to re­duc­ing rates of child harm and “daily” in­ci­dences of do­mes­tic vi­o­lence which chil­dren are ex­posed to, ac­cord­ing to Biloela Snr Sgt Nick Pa­ton of Biloela Po­lice Sta­tion.

Snr Sgt Pa­ton said in­form­ing the com­mu­nity about deal­ing with at-risk chil­dren, abuse and ne­glect was cru­cial in pro­tect­ing vul­ner­a­ble youth in ru­ral ar­eas who were also of­ten wit­nesses to do­mes­tic abuse in­ci­dents.

“Even though we don’t get a huge amount of re­ports of child ne­glect, our of­fi­cers go ev­ery day to do­mes­tic vi­o­lence sit­u­a­tions and in­ci­dents where chil­dren are present,” he said.

“These chil­dren are be­ing af­fected by things they’re wit­ness­ing at these in­ci­dents.”

He said the Biloela Child Pro­tec­tion In­ves­ti­ga­tion Unit (CPIU) dealt with cases of ne­glect and child harm, li­ais­ing with the Depart­ment of Child Safety where nec­es­sary.

“We all want to live in a safe com­mu­nity and the more we can do to en­able the com­mu­nity to live in safety and live to­gether in har­mony, the bet­ter.

“Chil­dren are very vul­ner­a­ble and need pro­tec­tion and they also need good role mod­els they can look up to, es­pe­cially where some par­ents are ne­glect­ful.”

Snr Sgt Pa­ton said a se­ries of work­shops, to be held next week in Biloela, pro­vided free by The National As­so­ci­a­tion for Preven­tion of Child Abuse and Ne­glect (NAPCAN), were im­por­tant for the com­mu­nity “to help pro­tect the chil­dren”.

“By do­ing cour­ses like these, peo­ple can set them­selves up as role mod­els. Any level of child abuse is wor­ry­ing.

“If we do noth­ing it’s go­ing to con­tinue and the more pos­i­tive ac­tion we take the more chance we have of re­duc­ing harm to chil­dren.”

Spa­ces are still avail­able for the work­shops, which are part of a statewide ed­u­ca­tion pro­gram funded by the Queens­land Depart­ment of Child Safety, Youth and Women.

To reg­is­ter, visit napcan.­ing-cal­en­dar

❝ The more pos­i­tive ac­tion we take the more chance we have of re­duc­ing harm to chil­dren.

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