With school holidays now underway child protection committees are encouraging the public be extra observant to help protect potentially vulnerable children.
Child Protection Committees Scotland, a nationwide group of child protection professionals, hopes their Eyes Open campaign will raise awareness that members of the public can play an important role to keep children safe from harm in the holidays.
East Lothian and Midlothian Public Protection Committee chairwoman Anne Neilson said: “For most local children this is a time of year filled with fun and free time, but for some families the summer holidays is a time of increased stress and pressure.
“In some cases, children are not supervised or cared for adequately, others might even experience serious neglect.”
Midlothian Council’s cabinet member for children’s services, Councillor Jim Muirhead (Lab) said: “By keeping our eyes open and our other senses tuned in, we might spot the telltale signs that a child is at risk.
“If something doesn’t seem quite right for a child, or a family of children, it’s better to say something than do nothing.”
Anyone who has concerns about a child or children can ask the child if they’re okay, offer the family some support, or alternatively contact Midlothian Council’s children’s services on 0131 271 6674 or the police on 101.