Talking to children about Black Lives Matter

In response to the Public Health England report on the disproportionate impact of COVID–19 on Black and Asian communities, and the global spotlight on racial injustice following the death of George Floyd in the United States, Cafcass has been reflecting on how it feels to be a young person in these uncertain times.

We are a children’s organisation. We represent the voices of children and all of them matter to us. We express on their behalf, their wishes for their futures. Their identities as adults grow stronger as they learn to understand and embrace their culture and heritage and we need to help them to see themselves as unique, important and valuable. Here are some of the things they have told us they are thinking and feeling right now, and the wide range of family circumstances in which they live: one or both birth parents; adoptive parents; blended families, kinship care, foster care.

One in five of the children we work with come from Black, Asian or other minority ethnic heritage – a higher proportion than in the general population. We will renew our efforts to listen hard to these children and their families, so we can understand the ways in which their lives are impacted by the current circumstances, and what more they need from us as a service at this time. We know too that to give our best service to children, we need to support our Black, Asian and minority ethnic colleagues who have shared with us their own sense of hurt and vulnerability in response to recent events.

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