Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Sexual Abuse against Children is a no no…


February 13, 2015,National Committee for Families and Children

Belize became the fifth country to ratify the UN convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). That CRC document has since become the most widely ratified convention and human rights instrument in the world. This is testament to our country’s recognition of the importance of caring for our children and nurturing them to be responsible and productive citizens. This commitment obligated our Government to enact laws and policies that create the enabling environment for children to flourish.

National Committee for Families and Children-1One of the obligations to our children is to protect them from all forms of sexual exploitation and abuse and neglect. In this light, the recent alleged sex-related cases and the sexual exploitation of our children in the news is extremely troubling to the NCFC. It is an example of the challenges the social sector encounters when attempting to change attitudes that allow children to remain vulnerable to violations of their person. Furthermore, such an act infringes on the very right of children safety and the right to be protected from being hurt and mistreated in body or mind. Allege perpetrator must bear in mind the stigma and trauma such an act brings to its victims, especially children. It’s a lifetime scar and clearly, sexual acts against children are a NO NO. Therefore, such act/s committed by anyone cannot and will not be condone and must be dealt with to the maximum extent of the law. Most importantly it undermines the fight to end violence against children. If we are to live up to our commitments to children, the participation of communities and families is pivotal. We urge those who hold positions and platforms that can be used to educate and inform to make a personal commitment to being informed and using their influence in positive ways.

We urge the media to participate in the ongoing dialogue about protecting our children in a more substantive manner by using the responsibility they have to share information, to question and to investigate and to even constructively call to task the many players in the child protection sector. Be a voice on behalf of children and help create awareness of the issues that impact on our children’s lives.

The NCFC also takes this opportunity to appeal to families, guardians and the community at large to take care of our children. Listen and talk to your children about being safe. In fact, we all have a part to play in providing a safe and healthy environment to our future leaders and to commit to creating spaces where children can know they are nurtured and protected. It’s our collective responsibility to make Belize worthy of its children.

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