Warning children of 'stranger danger' is not enough
Published 10/03/2014 | 02:30
The sentencing last week of an individual who viciously assaulted two young children has once again brought to the fore many parents' fear of "stranger danger": that someone could abduct and assault a vulnerable child.
However, the reality is that the majority of such offences are not carried out by a stranger but by someone who has already built up trust with a child or, indeed, in many cases with the whole family.
So warning children not to talk to strangers is simply not enough. Likewise, relying on garda vetting of the so-called "sex offenders' register", so that those who pose a risk will not have access to children, does not address the problem.