Skip to main content

Children: Abuse

Volume 487: debated on Monday 26 January 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families pursuant to the Answer of 12 January 2008 to Question 244554, what the definition is of emotional abuse. (248677)

Emotional abuse is defined in Chapter 1, paragraph 1.31 of “Working Together to Safeguard Children” 2006 as:

The persistent emotional maltreatment of a child such as to cause severe and persistent adverse effects on the child’s emotional development. It may involve conveying to children that they are worthless or unloved, inadequate, or valued only insofar as they meet the needs of another person. It may feature age or developmental inappropriate expectations being imposed on children. These may include interactions that are beyond the child’s developmental capability, as well as overprotection and limitation of exploration and learning, or preventing the child participating in normal social interaction. It may involve seeing or hearing the ill-treatment of another, serious bullying, causing children frequently to feel frightened or in danger, or the exploitation or corruption of children. Some level of emotional abuse is involved in all types of maltreatment of a child, though it may occur alone.