Gallagher, Bernard (2008) Preventing child deaths. Child Abuse Review, 17 (5). pp. 289-296. ISSN 0952-9136

In the week I began to write this editorial, City and Hackney Local Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB) published an executive summary of the serious case review (SCR) into the deaths of ten year old Antoine Gamor-Ogunkoya and his three year old sister Kenniece in London (City and Hackney Local Safeguarding Children Board, 2008). Both had been killed by their mother, Vivian Gamor. Antoine had been beaten with a hammer and Kenniece had been suffocated with clingfilm. Their mother was convicted of manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility in August 2007 and was detained indefinitely under the Mental Health Act 1983 (BBC, 2008; Community Care, 2007). The deaths of these children, and the release of this SCR, are powerful, though dreadful, reminders—if ones were needed—of the terrible abuse that children can suffer. They also act as a very forceful pointer that preventing child deaths is the most important challenge in child protection.

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