Responding to news that the number of children contacting Childline reporting loneliness is rising, Anne Longfield said:
“It is distressing to hear that the number of children reporting loneliness is increasing, especially as it likely represents just part of the issue. The sad truth is that the number who seek help are in the minority, which is why we must do all we can to encourage children to speak out about their feelings without stigma, and be receptive to signs of unhappiness.
“One factor could be the increasing role that social media plays in children’s lives, as they now spend over half their leisure time online. The internet provides children with fantastic opportunities for exploring the world and connecting with others but it can also be complex and leave them disempowered, so we must ensure that they get the right guidance.”