We all want children to have a good childhood. It’s important in itself, and it’s critical for this country’s prospects. Today’s children are our future economic prosperity, our tax payers and wealth producers, our support in our own old ages. But this generation will also need to change the world – to tackle the challenges of environmental degradation, to shape the opportunities of the digital era, and to address global complexity around citizenship, immigration and employment. There is a clear economic and social imperative to do the very best we can by the next generation.
The manifesto, published ahead of any upcoming General Election, calls on Britain’s political parties to include a six-point plan in their election manifestos to transform the life chances for disadvantaged children and to help all of England’s 12 million children to thrive.
The manifesto sets out some of the key issues that children have told the Children’s Commissioner’s Office are affecting their lives, and reflects many of the subjects the Children’s Commissioner has been shining a light on in recent years – children growing up in chaotic families, inadequate children’s mental health services, children’s safety and children living in poor quality housing such as B&Bs, converted office blocks or shipping containers.
The Children’s Commissioner’s manifesto focuses on six key themes: supporting stronger families, providing decent places for children to live, helping children to have healthy minds, keeping children active, providing SEND support for those who need it, and creating safer streets and play areas. It also sets out some of the likely costs involved alongside the policy proposals, including the Children’s Commissioner’s argument that existing statutory services must be put on a sustainable financial footing.
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