Judy Barker and Deborah Hodes, Routledge
This is a concise overview of child protection practice. Written by a paediatrician and health visitor it is targeted at health professionals.
However, it would be a useful reference book for anyone working with children. This third edition includes references to The Children Act 2004 and Working Together to Safeguard Children 2006 throughout.
The work has clear headings with bullet points and bold print. Useful lists of checks and indicators are included, for example, suspicious signs of physical abuse and age-related features of emotional abuse.
As well as chapters on each category of abuse, it highlights some challenging issues such as abuse of children with disabilities, the impact of ethnicity, culture and racism, risk of collusion with parents, confidentiality and information-sharing. Although not dealt with in depth their inclusion is sufficient to raise awareness.
There is an overview of the common assessment framework which ties in with the ethos of the book: to underline the importance of each practitioner’s contribution to the jigsaw that makes up the whole picture in child protection.
One omission is reference to abuse of position of trust which could be included in any further update, as an aid to raise professional awareness.
This book is recommended by Lord Laming and would be a good investment for any professional or student requiring a concise overview of safeguarding.
Julie Murphy is a budget holding lead professional project manager at Poole Council