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PS: Rise In Sex Crimes, Child Abuse Haunt Stakeholders

PS: Rise In Sex Crimes, Child  Abuse Haunt Stakeholders
(Front left): Medical Services in the Pacific founder and executive director Jennifer Poole and Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation Dr Josefa Koroiveta. (Back): Medical Services in the Pacific manager child helpline Monisha Singh, Ministry of Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation assistance director child services Ela Tukutukulevu and director for social welfare Rupeni Fatiaki after the signing of the new memorandum of understanding for national child helpline at the ministry’s head office in Suva on August 10, 2018. Photo: Ashna Kumar
August 11
10:00 2018

 

The Recent rape data and child abuse statistics released by the Office of the Director of Public Prosecution has started to haunt relevant stakeholders.

This was the findings by the Ministry of Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation Permanent Secretary Dr Josefa Koroivueta said: “The statistics by ODPP showed in the last 18 months, there was over 300 cases of rape and sexual offences on children,” Dr Koroivueta said.

“These data keeps us awake and haunts us.

“We need to break the silence and the child helpline is the avenue where we break the silence. We do not want to leave any stones unturned.”

And this rising number of abuse and violence against children is a huge concern for the Ministry of Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation.

It was highlighted during the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) for the national child helpline between the ministry and Medical Services in the Pacific (MSP) in Suva yesterday.

Dr Koroivueta said the abuse on children and violence shown in Fiji was of a huge concern.

“Our ministers in various forums have been highlighting the statistics released by the Office of the Director of Public Prosecution,” he said.

Dr Koroivueta said the unfortunate thing in regards with the abuse and violence on children was that they were done by people in positions of trust, family members and in some cases the child’s biological parents.

“That is something we should not sit back and allow to happen, but work to eliminate the issues,” he said.

“For the ministry, addressing violence and abuse in children is the ministry’s top priority.”

MSP founder and executive director Jennifer Poole said the programme had been running on 24 hours basis since the Tropical Cyclone Winston to handle enquiries of those who had been affected by the cyclone.

Child helpline was launched in 2015.

“MSP has been the first organisation in Fiji to roll out a national helpline and to be the first country in the Pacific to have the integrated child protection services including the national child helpline that is running 24 hours,” Ms Poole said.

“It isn’t only for the children, but also for adults to have enquiries regarding children, child welfare and family law.”

Edited by Percy Kean

Feedback:  ashna.kumar@fijisun.com.fj

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