LONDON (Reuters) - James Bond actor Daniel Craig has become the voice of a charity campaign launched on Tuesday to change attitudes towards troubled children.
The 39-year-old Casino Royale star has recorded radio slots for children’s charity Barnardo’s urging people not to give up on difficult youngsters.
The charity says fears about uncontrollable and “feral” children are exaggerated.
It found in a survey that a quarter of adults thought that disruptive or antisocial children were already beyond help by the time they were just 13.
The poll of more than 1,000 adults also found that two-thirds believed that children are more criminal than ever.
Barnardo’s said that youth crime had actually fallen substantially since 1995, according to the government’s British Crime Survey.
“How did it happen that we have become so dismissive of children,” said Barnardo’s Chief Executive Martin Narey.
“Some children’s behaviour is unacceptable and it has to be challenged. But we must not use that as an excuse to write off a generation.”
The charity’s campaign, “Believe in Children”, says all young people could be helped, no matter how difficult, unpleasant or uncooperative.
“The alternative is to dismiss an underclass of children who have nothing to lose and who face nothing more than permanent unemployment, non-achievement and almost inevitably a life of crime,” the charity said.
Last year Prime Minister Tony Blair stirred up controversy when he said the state should possibly intervene even before birth to stop the children of problem families growing up into troublemakers.
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