23/09/2021: Extremists using video-game chats to spread hate
Extremists are using mainstream video games and gaming chat platforms to spread hate, BBC Click has found. Over three months, researchers found anti-Semitism, racism and homophobia on platforms, including DLive and Odysee, where users stream and chat about games such as Call of Duty and Minecraft. Campaigners say including extremist narratives among everyday conversations can be a pathway to radicalisation.
21/09/2021: Children face ‘agonising’ waits for mental health care
Children struggling with mental health problems during the pandemic are facing “agonisingly” long waits for treatment, a BBC investigation has found. Data from half of England’s specialist child mental health services found one in five youngsters seen since Covid hit waited longer than 12 weeks for care. The numbers still waiting also appear to be rising sharply.
21/09/2021: Twitch hate raids: Minority streamers have ‘a target on their back’
“I’ve been told to kill myself, called the T-slur for trans people, the F-slur for gay people and misgendered numerous times.” You might have seen hashtags like #DoBetterTwitch or #ADayOffTwitch trending over the past few weeks and months. It’s because of the flood of abuse that streamers, mainly from minority or marginalised communities are receiving on games streaming platform Twitch.
21/09/2021: Young people ‘at risk of repeat homelessness’ if £20 Universal Credit uplift cut, charities warn
Cutting the £20-a-week Universal Credit increase will put young people at risk of repeat homelessness, more than 40 charities have warned. They have written a letter to Chancellor Rishi Sunak urging him not to remove the Universal Credit (UC) uplift at the end of the month. Led by Centrepoint and End Youth Homelessness, the letter says the increase has been a “lifeline” after it was temporarily introduced to help claimants during the coronavirus pandemic.
20/09/2021: The Role Of The Internet In Radicalising Extremists
The MoJ has just (16 September 2021) published new research “Exploring the role of the Internet in radicalisation and offending of convicted extremists.” Authored by Jonathan Kenyon, Jens Binder and Christopher Baker-Beall, the aim of the study was to establish the role of the Internet in radicalisation processes and offending of those convicted of extremist offences in England and Wales by comparing radicalisation pathways across 3 groups: those who primarily radicalised online; those who primarily radicalised offline; and those radicalised through both online and offline influences.
Read: Russell Webster
20/09/2021: Early baby therapy could reduce autism diagnoses
Training parents how to respond to babies showing early signs of autism could reduce by two-thirds the number of three-year-olds meeting the criteria for diagnosis, a small study suggests. Improvement on this scale has never been shown before, the UK and Australian researchers say. The first two years are critical for brain development – but most autism diagnoses are made at the age of three.
20/09/2021: Autism therapy aimed at infants may reduce likelihood of later diagnosis
Doctors have shown for the first time that a new therapy aimed at infants can reduce autistic behaviour and the likelihood the children will go on to be diagnosed with autism before they reach school age. Infants who received the therapy after displaying early signs of potential autism, such as avoiding eye contact and not responding to their name, were one-third as likely to have autism diagnosed at the age of three, compared with those who had standard care, the researchers found.
19/09/2021: Child poverty now costs Britain £38bn a year, says new independent report
The findings, to be released in the next few days, will add to concerns over government plans to end the £20-a-week uplift for universal credit, as MPs of all parties voice concerns that a cut will hit low-income families with children particularly hard. The new research, by Professor Donald Hirsch of Loughborough University, is the third study of its kind he has conducted over the past 15 years.
18/09/2021: ‘It takes too long to get support’: alarm over rising primary school exclusions
Sam Bates was excluded from school for the first time when he was five years old. After moving into year 1, he struggled to sit still, became frustrated with staff and pushed chairs over. He was sent home for one day and was then allowed back for only two hours a day, separated from his classmates, with a teaching assistant. From there, things unravelled.
18/09/2021: ‘I felt my body wasn’t good enough’: teenage troubles with Instagram
Internal research by Facebook that found its Instagram app worsens body image issues for young users has been leaked, revealing how aware the social media giant is of its product’s effect on mental health. According to leaked documents, research by the company over the last two years has consistently found that the photo-sharing platform is harmful to a large proportion of its users – particularly teenage girls.
17/09/2021: Will Quince replaces Vicky Ford as children and families minister
Former minister for welfare delivery Will Quince has replaced Vicky Ford as children and families minister as part of the Prime Minister’s cabinet reshuffle. During his time at the Department for Work and Pensions, Quince, MP for Colchester, previously took responsibility for policies on the management and delivery of benefits including housing benefits and universal credit, benefits support for disadvantaged groups and poverty.
16/09/2021: Nadhim Zahawi announced as education secretary
Nadhim Zahawi has been appointed the new education secretary for England – replacing Gavin Williamson in the Cabinet reshuffle. Mr Zahawi leaves his previous post as the minister responsible for the Covid vaccines roll-out.
16/09/2021: Charities issue stark warning over ‘decimation of youth services’
The National Youth Agency and YMCA have warned that a failure to invest immediately in youth services will “decimate” the sector and leave “a generation of young people without opportunities to thrive”.
15/09/2021: Disadvantaged children least confident being active, research warns
Children from low-income backgrounds are far less confident in being active and taking part in sport, according to the Youth Sport Trust. The Trust found that only around half of 11- to 16-year-olds from low income groups rated themselves as confident taking part in physical activity.
15/09/2021: Online child abuse crimes have surged by three-quarters and more must be done to protect children online
While online abuse crimes have surged by 78% over the last four years, new Government plans to regulate social media through the Online Safety Bill fall significantly short of tackling this issue.