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Child victims’ access to advocacy

16 April 2024

In a world designed by – and mainly for – adults, children’s voices are very often not heard. It is for this reason that the role of the Children’s Commissioner was established in 2004 – to ensure children’s needs and best interests are advocated for at a national level. The Children Act 2004 gives the […]

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The Big Ambition: Ambitions, Findings and Solutions

25 March 2024

As Children’s Commissioner it is my job to promote and protect the rights of children, and to make sure their voices are heard. That’s why in September 2023, I launched The Big Ambition to hear directly from children, young people, and parents across the country. I wanted to hear about what they wanted for the […]

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Children’s mental health services 2022-23

14 March 2024

Since I came into post in 2021, I have spoken to over a million children and young people across the country. The vast majority of children are happy, and feel supported by their family, school and wider community. However, there is a growing group of children who are struggling with their mental health. This generation […]

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Huge regional variation in support from children’s social services for some of England’s most vulnerable children  

5 March 2024

Over 100,000 of England’s most vulnerable children who are on social service plans are getting a postcode lottery of support with huge regional variations dictating the level of protection they get, previously unseen data from the Children’s Commissioner has revealed.  In worst case scenarios, these inconsistencies and lack of consistent early intervention can prevent children […]

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Lost in Transition: The destinations of children who leave the state education system

22 February 2024

When I became Children’s Commissioner, one of the first things I did was to conduct a nationwide inquiry into the educational experiences of children leaving state education. These children had fallen off the radar during the pandemic. Local authorities confided that they did not know where they had gone or how to support them to […]

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Digital playgrounds – Children’s views on gaming

8 January 2024

Part of the statutory role of the Children’s Commissioner is to consider the views and interests of children. Both are important parts of my role, but sometimes they can be in competition. Listening to children is a principle I hold incredibly tight, but I can see that listening uncritically to children’s views on certain issues […]

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Children’s Commissioner’s response to the Jay Review

22 December 2023

The following is a written response by the Children’s Commissioner’s office (CCo) to The Jay Review of Child Criminal Exploitation, launched by Action for Children and chaired by Professor Alexis Jay OBE. The Children’s Commissioner, Dame Rachel de Souza, has a statutory independent role to protect and promote the rights of children in England and […]

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The state of children and young people’s advocacy services in England

19 December 2023

Every child should feel that their voice is heard, and their wishes and feelings are taken into account by the adults that care for them. At the heart of all my work as Children’s Commissioner are the voices of children. I hear directly from children about their experiences of their home life, school, their friendships, […]

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Unaccompanied children in need of care

29 November 2023

As Children’s Commissioner, I have a duty to promote and protect the rights of all children. But I have a particular duty, and feel a profound responsibility, towards those who are not living with their own families. This includes the children who have arrived here unaccompanied, fleeing war and persecution in their home countries. The […]

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Children’s Commissioner’s briefing on the Victims and Prisoner’s Bill

27 November 2023

The Children’s Commissioner strongly welcomes the Victims and Prisoners Bill, which is a critical opportunity tostrengthen children’s rights to safety and justice. Child victims are among the most vulnerable – too oftenexcluded from a justice process designed with adults in mind, and overlooked when it comes to specialist supportto recover. While it is the ultimate […]

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Homeless 16- and 17-year olds in need of care

16 November 2023

Every child deserves a safe and loving home – either with their own family or, if that is not possible, in a stable, caring alternative. As Children’s Commissioner, I have heard from children across the country, including in my recent independent Family Review about just how central a loving home is for every child to […]

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Help at Hand annual report 2023

14 November 2023

As the Children’s Commissioner for England, my statutory duty, as set out in the Children Act 2004, is to promote and protect the rights of all children, with particular regard to children who are living away from home or receiving social care services. In 2014, under section 2D of Act, the Commissioner’s powers were extended […]

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