A blueprint for government on children’s issues was presented to
political parties in Northern Ireland, by three leading children’s
Barnardo’s, the Child Poverty Action Group and the NSPCC have
put together a manifesto calling for policies to help eradicate
child poverty, and protect children from abuse and neglect.
They hope the political parties will take on board the proposals
and incorporate them into their election campaigns to show their
commitment for children.
Provisions outlined in ‘Our Children, Their future- a manifesto
for children in Northern Ireland’ include developing effective and
independent powers for the new NI children’s commissioner,
appointing a minister for children, and implementing a systematic,
and regular analysis of child well-being indicators across Northern
Ireland and the UK.
Giving children the chance to have a real say in decisions that
affect their lives and offering greater financial provision for
themselves and their families were also earmarked in the
According to the charities, one child in every three lives in
poverty in Northern Ireland, and three children on average are
raped or indecently assualted each week.
Lynne Peyton, NSPCC regional director, said: “Our manifesto
spells out what the political parties in Northern Ireland must do
if they really are committed to supporting and protecting children.
We are giving them information and direction to turn rhetoric into
concrete plans for government.”