THE issue of child neglect will be explored today at a conference in York, to be attended by more than 200 childcare professionals.

The conference, hosted by City of York Safeguarding Children Board, will feature childcare expert, professor Eileen Munro as keynote speaker.

“Professor Munro conducted a wide-ranging national review into front-line child- protection practice in 2011 on behalf of the Secretary of State for Education, Michael Gove,” said a board spokesman.

“Her review proposed some significant changes in the way in which social workers are trained and how their skills are developed. It also recognised that Government targets and red tape needed to be scrapped.”

Roger Thompson, the independent board chair, said it recognised all agencies needed to further improve the way they identified and responded to neglect, and because of this, the board had undertaken a comprehensive two-year review which would be launched at the conference.

“The key message of the review is that some children have to live with neglect for far too long before action is taken. We need to identify these children sooner and ensure our interventions are more effective.”