Child neglect cases on the up in the county

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A CHILD neglect crisis is looming according to a children’s charity after the number of reports to its helpline increased in South Yorkshire.

Last year, the NSPCC dealt with 1,056 calls from Yorkshire and the Humber - including 77 from Sheffield, 47 from Doncaster and 42 from Rotherham.

One Sheffield resident called the charity about a primary school-aged child whose mother smoked cannabis and drank heavily, leaving her incapable of looking after the youngster.

Last year, 618 children in South Yorkshire were subject to child protection plans because they were at risk of harm – up from 549 on the previous year.

Gordon Ratcliffe, of the NSPCC in South Yorkshire, said: “More people than ever are contacting the NSPCC about child neglect.

“Some of this will be down to the public being more willing to speak out but there is clearly a worrying trend, not just in our figures, but from a range of agencies.”

He added the charity was working to raise awareness of the issue.