Fiji education ministry review to address growing child abuse | #childabuse | #children | #kids

Fiji’s Education Ministry says it’s reviewing its Child Protection Policy to address the growing reports of child abuse in the country.

This comes after a United Nations report last week revealed the commercial sexual exploitation of children continues to be a problem in Fiji.

The report found incidents of abuse were “usually performed by family members, foreign tourists, taxi drivers, businesspeople and crew on foreign fishing vessels”.

The ministry’s head of education Timoci Bure said they are working with the Social Welfare and Police departments to examine reports received from schools across the country on the issue.

Photo: 123RF

“During these meetings, data and information regarding cases of abuse are also presented and discussed in detail. Also with there are strategies and means by which we as stakeholders can address these issues.”

Bure said he wants more dialogue and collaboration with other stakeholders to address the issue.

The UN Pacific Socio-Economic Impact Assessment of Covid-19 in Fiji Report was presented to the government before its announcement of the 2020-2021 National Budget in July.

The report said the most common forms of child sexual exploitation in Fiji are prostitution, pornography and sex trafficking.

The report also found that often Fijian children trapped in these activities are involved in all of them.

The Education Ministry said these issues concern child labour, abuse, negligence and exploitation that violate the law on the rights of a child in Fiji.

Timoce Bure said issues faced by students in schools and at home should also be addressed.

He said the ministry is focussed on addressing the “pressing issues” faced by children in schools and society.

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