Posted by : Posted on : 09-Sep-2020

Fighting child abuse with communities empowered to tackle the concerns.

Solomon Islands is experiencing disturbing reports of child abuse and perhaps the Fiji response to child sexual abuse might prove worthwhile studying.

 “Confronted by the rise of child sexual abuse in Fiji, NGO Save the Children is forming community based child protection committees.

“The NGO's Fiji chief executive, Shairana Ali, said the committees would act as custodians for children and monitor their well-being.

"The committees are responsible for preventing child abuse and reporting cases of abuse to relevant authorities," Ali said.

“The move follows data released by the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions showing 13 cases of alleged sexual abuse of under 18-year-olds last month.

“Particularly disturbing is that rape topped the offences involving young children, Ali said.

“Fiji was well positioned to form a strong alliance on child protection that included faith-based organizations to address the issue, she said.

"Article 19 of the Convention of the Rights of the Child, which Fiji signed in 1993, states that children must be protected from abuse, neglect, and exploitation therefore as a signatory of the Convention, duty-bearers must ensure that children's safety and protection is paramount," Ali said.

"Under the Fiji Constitution, every child has the right to be protected from abuse, neglect, harmful cultural practices, any form of violence, inhumane treatment and punishment, and hazardous or exploitative labour."

Copyright @ 2020, Radio New Zealand

Yours sincerely

Frank Short

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