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Should there be a law for minimum age to leave children alone???

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Should there be a law for minimum age to leave children alone???

Post by Guest on 07.08.12 14:56

Just seen this from NSPCC. Why has this country not got a law about having a minimum age when you can leave children alone. Surely there should be. I would say 10 would be a minimum age at least.



NSPCC@NSPCC

Q. What age can a child be left home on their own? #SafeSummerKids





NSPCC@NSPCC

A. There's no legal minimum age for a child to be left alone. Here's our advice for parents & carers http://bit.ly/SzC95y #SafeSummerKids

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Re: Should there be a law for minimum age to leave children alone???

Post by Invinoveritas on 07.08.12 15:16

The NSPCC advise that most children under the age of 13 are not mature enough to cope with an emergency, also never to leave babies or young children alone, whether asleep or awake.

The Children and Young Persons Act (1933) covers child neglect.

http://www.eastsussex.gov.uk/childrenandfamilies/childcare/default1.htm

P.S. didn´t somebody try to get them prosecuted under this act?, was it Tony?

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Re: Should there be a law for minimum age to leave children alone???

Post by Julchen on 07.08.12 16:40

This is quite an interesting question.
My feeling is that deep down the question is about the general approach to parenting or care for your family.

My parents never ever left me unsupervised, not once. No way. Either my nanny (not grandmother but professional child minder) had to do a night shift or only one of my parents would attend whatever event was on.
Right through until I turned 21.
Honestly? I hated it at the time.
Even "going to the disco" meant, having my father waiting outside in his car. No, not just taking me there and picking me up. Wait outside! Absolutely embarrassing!!!!
BUT: There was no danger of me coming to any harm.

Now that we have two young children (6 and 4 1/2), we have talked a lot about the McCanns and what might or might not have happened that night.
Our conclusion: Other things might have happened to us, but certainly not having one of the kids or both kids taken while we where out partying. We do what the South Europeans do: take the children with us!

And I have to admit that I will wait outside any disco (or make my husband do so) until the girls will be 21.

Having said that, let me throw the following thought into this discussion:

-What I notice over here in GB is, that parents "get rid" of their children at a very early age. Our neighbour had her kid, stayed at home for 6 weeks and was back to work. Her daughter being put into a nursery from 8.30 am till 6pm.
-Next point this (strange) school system with kids spending all day at school. Even spending part of the late afternoon and early evening at after school clubs.
-Next point(what is very strange to a continental on-looker) this concept of "why should I save money for the children? Why should they inherit my hard earned cash? The house?"
In Germany and most other continental countries it's all about security for your children's future.
You don't earn money for yourself but to hand it down to your children.

On the other hand most elderly relatives are vital part of a family. They are not being parked in some care home,end of..
They are respected members of the social structure, we call them "Honoratioren" (honoured/highly valued people).

-And yet another point which in itself may not seem to be part of the question:
Continental Europe is buzzing with small to mid-sized family businesses. Self-employment with all the family members working for one sold-trader "little white van" company is the norm.

What I am getting at:
Have the British lost their parenting skills because they let go of their children too early?
Would there be less cases like the McCanns or at a very low level the Matthews case if the concept of well functioning families was still the way it used to be?
Have the British become too tolerant, better: are too afraid of speaking out since it might hurt other people's feelings(I am thinking of what young girls in our area are wearing. No way, they could do that in Germany or southern parts of Europe).

There is a lot of discussion about "respect".
But doesn't respect include a certain amount of caring and loving attitude?
Respect to me means not to dump your children for egoistic reasons like partying but respect(i.e. care for) their needs.

Thinking along these lines, you can't but end up spending hours in your car outside a disco waiting for your teenager to find you utterly embarrassing, but take him/her home safely.

Sorry for rambling but the issue of respect and safety throughout the generations is really very close to my heart.

Cheers

Jule

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Re: Should there be a law for minimum age to leave children alone???

Post by PeterMac on 07.08.12 17:18

I don't really want to get involved in this one, but 21 !!!
People can marry at 18 without parents consent, 16 with it, fight and die for their country at 18, join the Police and be on independent patrol at 18, or certainly 19, a friend -now deceased - of mine flew Wellingtons at the age of 19 and a Lancaster at the age of 21 in bombing raids over occupied Europe. As Pilot Officer, not crew !

Are you really going to hang around outside the disco until she is 21 ?
What sort of psychological harm will it do to delay her growing up and taking responsibility for her own actions ?

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Re: Should there be a law for minimum age to leave children alone???

Post by tigger on 07.08.12 17:23

Actually Petermac, the law on marrying without consent of the parents in the Netherlands was antiquated even 40 years ago. I don't know exactly when it got changed, but somewhere in the 70's until one was 30 consent of the parents had to be in place for a wedding, if it wasn't there was the opportunity to apply to a court for a civil wedding only.

Calvinistic country you see....

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Re: Should there be a law for minimum age to leave children alone???

Post by Julchen on 07.08.12 17:30

@PeterMac wrote:I don't really want to get involved in this one, but 21 !!!
People can marry at 18 without parents consent, 16 with it, fight and die for their country at 18, join the Police and be on independent patrol at 18, or certainly 19, a friend -now deceased - of mine flew Wellingtons at the age of 19 and a Lancaster at the age of 21 in bombing raids over occupied Europe. As Pilot Officer, not crew !

Are you really going to hang around outside the disco until she is 21 ?
What sort of psychological harm will it do to delay her growing up and taking responsibility for her own actions ?


Might make more sense to care for the little ones of today's Britain rather than indulge in utter nostalgia for the events in Europe 70 years ago.

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Re: Should there be a law for minimum age to leave children alone???

Post by Invinoveritas on 07.08.12 18:21

@Julchen wrote:
@PeterMac wrote:I don't really want to get involved in this one, but 21 !!!
People can marry at 18 without parents consent, 16 with it, fight and die for their country at 18, join the Police and be on independent patrol at 18, or certainly 19, a friend -now deceased - of mine flew Wellingtons at the age of 19 and a Lancaster at the age of 21 in bombing raids over occupied Europe. As Pilot Officer, not crew !

Are you really going to hang around outside the disco until she is 21 ?
What sort of psychological harm will it do to delay her growing up and taking responsibility for her own actions ?


Might make more sense to care for the little ones of today's Britain rather than indulge in utter nostalgia for the events in Europe 70 years ago.

Jule

Well, utter nostalgia it wasn´t, millions died and then again I agree with you Julchen, it´s time to bury the hatchet and get on with living, it saddens me to see how often UK TV has programmes relating to the second world war, it is as if the war has never ended

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Re: Should there be a law for minimum age to leave children alone???

Post by EJW on 07.08.12 20:25

@Invinoveritas wrote:
@Julchen wrote:
@PeterMac wrote:I don't really want to get involved in this one, but 21 !!!
People can marry at 18 without parents consent, 16 with it, fight and die for their country at 18, join the Police and be on independent patrol at 18, or certainly 19, a friend -now deceased - of mine flew Wellingtons at the age of 19 and a Lancaster at the age of 21 in bombing raids over occupied Europe. As Pilot Officer, not crew !

Are you really going to hang around outside the disco until she is 21 ?
What sort of psychological harm will it do to delay her growing up and taking responsibility for her own actions ?


Might make more sense to care for the little ones of today's Britain rather than indulge in utter nostalgia for the events in Europe 70 years ago.

Jule

Well, utter nostalgia it wasn´t, millions died and then again I agree with you Julchen, it´s time to bury the hatchet and get on with living, it saddens me to see how often UK TV has programmes relating to the second world war, it is as if the war has never ended


Really? Shame on you. The devastation of the second world war should never be forgotten and should be continually remembered for our future generations, in the hope that it never happens again. "Utter nostalgia", words fail me and as a granddaughter of a decorated "Desert Rat" I am offended.

In regards to still being "parented" at the age of 21, do we not want our childern to grow up and experience life with all it's joys and sorrows? Is that not what being a parent is ultimately about?

Most teenagers who attend university these days are aged 18/19 and well out of their parents reach in universities sometimes hundreds of miles away. I for one left for uni at 18 and never fully lived at home again, I had a job, house and mortgage at 22 and my parents were exceptionally proud of me. My late mother would have fallen off her chair at the thought of policing me at disco's at the age of 21. Ridiculous.

To the original question, it is quite unbelievable that we do not have a minimum age, even with recommendations to follow from charities like the NSPCC, I think there should be some legal age requirement for a child left alone.

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Re: Should there be a law for minimum age to leave children alone???

Post by Olive_Boyle on 08.08.12 2:05

Can I just say to Jule that the British people that I am and know are not the British people that you seem to know. Not sure where you are getting your views of us from.

My daughter has and always comes first and I can't think of a single other person I know that is any different - other than my ex sister in law who is a proper Jeremy Kyler (there are always exceptions). Maybe I just associate with the kind of people that I am myself.

The whole purpose of British people buying their homes is so that they can pass them on to their children. What other reason would there be?

When I had my daughter I realised the meaning of life and my life revolves around her.

The McCann's parenting behaviour is not even close to normal in my world.

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Re: Should there be a law for minimum age to leave children alone???

Post by PeterMac on 08.08.12 7:38

My point has clearly been missed. Sorry if it was not clear.
It was that 21 years old is far too late to start to allow a person to develop a sense of personal responsibility.
The examples given were specifics to support the general thesis.
There are hundreds more I could have used, but serving police officers, and service personnel are the ones people most commonly understand.

Just as an aside, if a older man is seen in a car, lurking outside a disco frequented by young women, he might attract some suspicion.

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Re: Should there be a law for minimum age to leave children alone???

Post by Guest on 08.08.12 8:45

I understood the point you were making PeterMac.

The age of majority as I was growing up - and you of course - was 21 and, in the environment in which I lived, anyone under that age was regarded as a child and not encouraged to have ideas which conflicted with that of their parents' generation.

It's to be hoped that this blinkered attitude isn't too prevalent today but it probably is in some communities.

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Re: Should there be a law for minimum age to leave children alone???

Post by Julchen on 08.08.12 8:56

Jean wrote:

It's to be hoped that this blinkered attitude isn't too prevalent today but it probably is in some communities.

And should be in other communities! "Children" are much safer in such an environment. As I stated before in a CARING community. A concept that has been lost in today's Britain. Concerning both, children and the elderly!!

Jule

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Re: Should there be a law for minimum age to leave children alone???

Post by Miraflores on 08.08.12 8:58


Just as an aside, if a older man is seen in a car, lurking outside a
disco frequented by young women, he might attract some suspicion.

Just as an aside (many years ago) my school started runnning a series of discos. People started objecting about things; the noise, the middle-aged men hanging around outside. In order to deal with the objections head on, my headmistress went and talked to each house in the vicinity. Did they object personally? No! She then went to talk to the middle-aged men hanging around. You can probably guess what's coming - she already knew them from parents' evenings - they were the girls' fathers. No more objections to the discos after that.

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