The BBC is reporting that a whistle-blowing helpline for employees in England to raise concerns about child protection failures in the workplace is to be launched on Monday.
Run by the NSPCC for the Home Office, which has provided £500,000 in funding, it will advise callers from any sector on whistle-blowing and help protect them from any resulting discrimination.
The charity’s boss said the “vital” service would help children in danger.
Any concerns raised will be passed on to relevant authorities to investigate.
The establishment of the helpline follows the Rotherham abuse scandal, in which at least 1,400 children were sexually exploited amid a series of collective failures by the authorities.
The helpline is aimed at staff in any sector who are afraid to raise concerns about the way their organisation is dealing with child abuse cases or potential risks to children, or who feel they have exhausted all avenues with their employer.
NSPCC chief executive Peter Wanless said: “If an employee thinks a child is in danger or has been failed by their organisation then nothing should stand in the way of them speaking out.
“Too often people with concerns have kept silent because they have been fearful of the consequences for their jobs, and this can have devastating consequences for the children involved.
“A feature of the child abuse scandals of recent years has been people who said they thought something wasn’t right but were unsure whether they could discuss their concerns confidentially outside their organisation.”
Karen Bradley, minister for preventing abuse, exploitation and crime, said the helpline would be “a vital service in our fight to end child abuse, including sexual exploitation”…
The helpline will be open from 08:00 to 20:00 GMT Monday to Friday, and will also be able to receive emails. Those who call at the weekend or outside the operating hours will be able to leave their details so they can be contacted later.
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