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To wonder if a young teenage parent needs a babysitter, or is considered an adult?

(11 Posts)
orchidee Mon 30-May-11 19:49:39

This is a hypothetical issue triggered after reading another post here.

So if a young teenager (schoolage, say 13/14) isn't allowed to be home alone, or isn't allowed to babysit younger children, what happens if the young teenager has a baby of their own? Kids are becoming parents from age 11/12 aren't they? (I know it's true as The Daily Mail says so smile) - what happens though? If the teenage parents still live with their parents, do the GP get in trouble if the parents are left unsupervised with the GC?

Also, does anyone definitively know at what age children are allowed to be left alone or are alloweed to babysit other children? I know things have changed since I were a lass and we just used common sense about who was capable or not, but with mobile phones and NHSDirect surely it is now safer than it used to be?

saffy85 Mon 30-May-11 19:55:36

If the teenage parent is living with their parents I think their parents have to have parental responsibility of the baby until the teenager is old enough (16 I think). You can't claim any benefit if you're under 16 AFAIK. I don't know how it works really but pretty sure there isn't a minimum age you can babysit from.

TheCowardlyLion Mon 30-May-11 20:05:51

Apparently - according to DH, who went on a safeguarding course the other day - there is no minimum age at which it is an offence to leave a child alone if the adult can reasonably believe that the child will not be at risk.

Obviously, what we might or might not consider risk to include is a whole minefield of its own...

cat64 Mon 30-May-11 20:32:37

Message withdrawn

SardineQueen Mon 30-May-11 20:42:41

There's no minimum age.

You do what you think best.
Then if anything happens, even if it was totally unforeseeable, and you made a sensible call in the first place, you can be prosecuted.

So that's all very straightforward grin

orchidee Mon 30-May-11 21:20:36

Minefield indeed - thanks for the responses!
It'll be a while before I have to think about this stuff seriously (teenagers acting as babysitters to my DC, hopefully not my DC being a teenage parent)

maypole1 Mon 30-May-11 21:33:43

A teenage mum under 16 would never be living alone they cannot legally hold a tenancy

If I was a mum of a 14 girl who had a baby I would not be leaving them alone all night.

SardineQueen Mon 30-May-11 21:52:46

What happens if they are homeless maypole? If they get chucked out?

SardineQueen Mon 30-May-11 21:53:23

Surely then the council would find them somewhere to live? Or would they take them both into care and split them up sad

cat64 Tue 31-May-11 10:28:04

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EricNorthmansMistress Tue 31-May-11 13:08:33

If the young teenage mother was considered unsafe to care for the child then SS would be involved, or family members would ensure she had support at all times (you would hope). Not many 11/12 year olds have babies by the way, and those that do most definitely will have SS involvement!

Sardine - if a teenager (under 16) with a baby got thrown out of their home they would be considered in need of a social care assessment and would probably be accommodated into a P&B foster placement together. If they were 16+ it would probably be a private rental leased by the council, or temporary accommodation. Or B&B. But B&B would should be an absolute last resort for any parent of a baby, but even more so a teenage parent.

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