New parents cut off from support says NSPCC

Dear Editor,

This week the NSPCC and a coalition of early years charities issued a stark warning about the risk of failing a generation of babies born during the pandemic.

Together, we have written and sent an open letter to Secretary of Health and Social Care,  Matt Hancock,  to say we do not believe England’s health visiting programme is equipped to deal with the challenges created by Coronavirus.

The COVID-19 outbreak has meant many women have given birth alone and new parents have been cut off from their support networks, which makes health visitors even more important.

Figures show that just 1 in 10 parents with children under two saw a health visitor face-to-face during the pandemic.

And over the last six months the NSPCC Helpline has received almost 2,000 contacts about parental mental health concerns

Our letter to Matt Hancock, backed by over 2,000 members of the public, highlights that the restructure of Public Health England must prioritise giving every child a fair start in life.

Now we are inviting people to join the thousands who have already raised their voice and signed the Fight for a Fair Start petition by visiting www.nspcc.org.uk/support-us/campaigns/fight-for-a-fair-start/.

Kind Regards,

Sharon Copsey

NSPCC Regional Head of Service in the South West

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