There is an interesting article in The Independent concerning the impact on police professionals of dealing with cases of child abuse.
Senior officers describe the highly stressful nature of unavoidably
distressing work. They point to the risk of burnout and the need for support
and counselling for employees.
They are absolutely right. Child protection work takes its toll
on the people who do it. Careful thought needs to be given to how they can be
appropriately supported and sympathetically managed. Resources need to be
available to support employees who are under great pressure or who are traumatised
by their contact with abuse and abusers.
The saddest thing, I think, is that you seldom hear similar
thoughts being expressed about local authority social workers. They are equally
involved in dealing with distressing situations on a daily basis. They often
have longer-term and closer involvement with the victims of abuse, children and
young people, than do police officers.
There needs to be much clearer thinking about how we support
all the professionals and practitioners who have to confront child abuse and
neglect in their working lives. And there is a need to mobilise resources, such
as counselling and therapy, which should be available to all workers, whatever their
agencies, who need them.