Wednesday 17 October 2018

Is it right to step in if a child is being abused in public?

A coffee in the morning sunshine turns into an ugly scene... but should we stand up and take action, asks Niamh Horan

Stock image: Depositphotos
Stock image: Depositphotos
Niamh Horan

Niamh Horan

Would you intervene if you saw a child being abused?

So much child abuse takes place behind closed doors that surely it's incumbent on us to step in when we witness it in a public place. It seems like the ultimate no-brainer. Yet, faced with the reality, you may be forced to think twice.

Sitting outside a well-known Dublin cafe recently, I was enjoying coffee with an old friend in the morning sunshine when the roaring started. A middle-aged, well-dressed man had his son in a deadlock in his arms. With the child facing front, crying and visibly distressed, the man was squeezing him with all his force and shouting into his small face.

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