11 Dec 2006

The Archbishop of Canterbury and The Children's Society Welcome Report on Commercialisation of Childhood

11 December 2006

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Patron of The Children's Society's Good Childhood Inquiry said following the publication of the Compass Commercialisation of Childhood report: "There is an increasing political and social consensus that something needs to be done to safeguard children from the worst excesses of direct marketing and the pressures of commercialisation. As patron of The Children's Society's Good Childhood Inquiry, I welcome this report by Compass and their helpful contribution to what is an ongoing, but growing, national debate."

Bob Reitemeier, Chief Executive of The Children's Society said: 'Compass' report, which argues that childhood is being increasingly commercialised, provides further evidence that our wealth as a society has not bought us the kind of childhood we want for our children.

The increasing realisation that, as a society, we have got some important things wrong about childhood is why The Children's Society has launched the UK's first independent inquiry into childhood. The effect of an unchecked escalation of marketing to children, as outlined in Compass' report, is one of the key areas to be considered by the inquiry panel.

Our research with 8,000 young people, conducted for the launch of the inquiry, highlights that it is not material possessions but the quality of relationships that are the most important factors for a good childhood. It will come as a shock to many that this Christmas the most wanted present among children may well be time spent with family and friends.'

Notes to Editors:

Media enquiries: Zoe Mason, campaigns and media officer on 020 7841 4637 or at zoe.mason@childrenssociety.org.uk. For out of hours call please call the media mobile on 07810 796 508