Child Safety in action


Spring 2009 has been a very exciting time for child safety in Europe.

As noted earlier in this addition of the Alert, May 6 was the launch of Child Safety Report Cards in 24 Member States and much needed attention was provided to this leading killer of European children and youth and a renewed call was made for new or continued action for Member States.

In addition the Spanish Ministry of Health and Social Policies hosted on May 25 a conference on injury prevention with a focus on child injury prevention. The discussions were opened by Ildefonso Hernández Aguado Director General of Public Health with key note plenaries provided by Francesca Racioppi of the WHO Regional Office for Europe, Violence and Injury Prevention and Joanne Vincenten, Director of the European Child Safety Alliance. In the closing remarks of the conference the Ministry of Health and Social Policies made a specific commitment to place more focus on the prevention of child injuries and particularly in the area of water safety.

The main focus of the discussions were the needs for: improvement the injury information systems, increased awareness by the public and decision makers that injuries are the result of human acts or negligence and they do not occur by chance, attention to address equity in injuries, the needed involvement of various sectors to move forward, enhanced capacity building and for the development of projects addressing information and training of professionals and the general public. It was noted that all of these needs can only be achieved through a close collaboration with the local and regional authorities (autonomous communities) which are near the citizens. Delegates noted they must keep in mind that above all the economical cost associated to injuries, there is a always a tremendous amount of suffering and social cost behind them. Partners in Spain will be moving forward on actions to bring these conference goals to reality.

Also in May, Johnson and Johnson (J&J) released their 2008 Corporate Contributions Annual report in which the European Child Safety Alliance (ECSA) of EuroSafe was featured. The article describes the working approach of the Alliance and its diverse and dedicated network that has been operating for over 9 years. Virginie Delwart, Manager, Corporate Social Responsibility, Europe, Middle East & North Africa said that J&J wanted to feature the Alliance in their recent report based on their outstanding track record. "Due to the innovative collaboration between member countries and the evidence-based approach, ECSA has had a tremendous impact on the lives of families and has saved a countless number of children". J&J, Europe, Middle East & North Africa division is the founding sponsor of the Alliance and continues to support the Alliance actions to raise the profile of child injury prevention in Europe and advocate for evidenced based solutions for almost a decade. Together J&J and the Alliance are working to improve children's health and well being.

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