It’s a fairly dry old name for a site about children’s play isn’t it? What has play got to do with policy anyway? What business do policy makers have interfering with something as natural as children playing? Aren’t they bound to just make something beautiful and simple, complicated and boring?
Well, yes, if we let them anywhere near children’s playgrounds or other play spaces they probably would (unless they forgot their jobs for a while and joined in – then they might just remember how much fun it is to just play).
The point is that children’s play space is under threat. Increases in traffic volume, real and perceived levels of crime, badly designed housing, fear of bullying and violence and cuts in park and play service staff, have all conspired to make public space, in many areas, a no-go area for children, which means more and more of them are living unhealthy, sedentary lifestyles – stuck at home in front of the TV or computer screen – when they badly want and need to be out playing with their friends.
Policy for Play is a site for anyone interested in changing this. We aim to debate, argue, present the evidence, make the case and generally make a noise for children’s right to play to be properly addressed by public policy. Because if children aren’t playing in public – where are they playing?
It is the responsibilty of all governments, under an international treaty – the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, 1989 – to ensure children’s right to play is respected and promoted. It is our responsibility – as professionals or simply as adult citizens and voters – to hold our governments to account for this: to insist on it, because children are generally not in a position to insist on it for themselves.
If you want to hold your government – or governments – to account for children’s right to play, please sign up and we will let you know whenever their is anything new on here to read or link to.
There will be a media release, later this afternoon, summarising the main points of a talk that I am giving after Play England’s annual members meeting and I will follow this up with a full blog of the talk itself.
Thanks for visiting and, as they say …
watch this space!