Have we become too protective of children in the wake of new awareness of pedophilia? There's an interesting new report out in Britain:

Anyone working for a voluntary organisation who comes into contact with children in any way has to take the paedophile test.

‘From Girl Guiders to football coaches, from Christmas-time Santas to parents helping out in schools, volunteersonce regarded as pillars of the community have been transformed in the regulatory and public imagination into potential child abusers, barred from any contact with children until the database gives them the green light.’ (p.x)

The effect of this treatment is to put some people off volunteering altogether.

The Volunteer Survey 2007 found that 13 per cent of men would not volunteer because they were worried people would think they were child abusers (p.16) and 28 per cent of those who responded to an online survey carried out for Licensed to Hug said they knew someone who had been put off volunteering by the CRB process (p.18). The Children’s Commissioner, Sir Al Aynsley Green, has said that nearly 50,000 girls are waiting to join the Guides because of a shortage of adult volunteers, partly caused by the red tape of the CRB process.

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