Increase in child abuse and neglect referrals in Wakefield

NSPCC Helpline call centre
NSPCC Helpline call centre
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The number of abuse and neglect cases being referred to police and social services by the NSPCC in Wakefield has increased.

During the past year the charity has referred 153 cases involving children, compared to 145 for the previous 12 months, after calls to its free helpline.

And across West Yorkshire there was an increase from 843 to 1024.

John Cameron, head of the NSPCC helpline, said: “These figures do not necessarily represent more abuse or neglect in the region, but are likely to show that people are more willing to take action and pick up the phone following recent shocking cases.

“It’s encouraging that people feel they have a responsibility for vulnerable children and are acting to report their concerns. We urge the public and professionals to continue to act on their instincts when they feel something could be wrong, and not wait until they are certain.

“We work closely with local authorities who take the next, vital step in protecting these children and we want to support and advise anyone working with children and enable them to take urgent action when necessary. It’s extremely worrying that nationally half of our referrals involve children under five, including babies, who rely on adults to speak out on their behalf.”

Anyone worried about a child should contact the 24-hour, free NSPCC helpline on 0808 800 5000, text 88858 or email help@nspcc.org.uk

Calls can be anonymous.