Monday, 11 June 2007

Letter from Clive Dorman to Silver River about Bring Up Baby

This is the text of a pdf elsewhere, that I wrote to Silver River...

Tanya Shaw
Joint Head, Factual and Features
Brook House
4th Floor
2-16 Torrington Place
London WC1E 7EH

17th May 2007

Dear Tanya
You may recall our having email correspondence about the above show, and sending me reassurances that safeguards are in place to protect both babies and the families of those involved.

In view of Corinne Abrams feature in May 12’s Sun Newspaper, and reports that Claire Verity is involved with the show, I must formally ask for further reassurances. The following is the basis of an email I sent Hamish Mykura at C4, to which I have not received a satisfactory response, and to whom I am also writing:

Quite simply, babies exposed to anything approaching Truby King’s methods and routines are worryingly likely to suffer neglect and emotional damage that was unknown in his time.

There is a good deal of concern being expressed about this programme and I need an urgent and specific response so that I can come to a balanced and informed conclusion as to whether the show is in fact abusing infants in the name of entertainment.


1.Who are, or which bodies make up, the medical advice and support teams (independent experts) I have been told are advising the programme?

2.Are the parents involved to be informed that Truby King has been internationally discredited for his methods and practices, in order that that they can make an informed choice? I take exception to the comments from Silver River that parents would choose to follow these styles in any case. Some parents also smoke, take heroin and choose to neglect their children, but this does not make, as Daisy suggested, “in our view, a justifiable experiment”.

3.How do Channel Four and Silver River aim to comply with Unicef Convention on the Rights of the Child, which states:

The Convention sets out these rights in 54 articles and two Optional Protocols. It spells out the basic human rights that children everywhere have: the right to survival; to develop to the fullest; to protection from harmful influences, abuse and exploitation; and to participate fully in family, cultural and social life. The four core principles of the Convention are non-discrimination; devotion to the best interests of the child; the right to life, survival and development; and respect for the views of the child. Every right spelled out in the Convention is inherent to the human dignity and harmonious development of every child. The Convention protects children’s rights by setting standards
in health care; education; and legal, civil and social services.

4. Do you (both) conform to the guidelines set out by the government – Sure Start Birth to Three Matters? and are you aware of the recommendations in Every Child Matters –

I am sure that C4 and Silver River have good intentions, but it is not acceptable to claim you have no knowledge of the dangers I am alerting you to in order to persist with a programme that should not be aired in the form it is being promoted.

I look forward to an early and full response.
With best wishes
Clive Dorman
Director and Co-founder
The Children’s Project Ltd

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