Media Release

The Need to Protect Children from Harm at all Times

As we enter Child Protection Week (28th May to 4th June 2017, and reflect on the South African news reports of the past few months, it would appear that children themselves have little to celebrate in relation to their safety and the protection of their rights within the home, within the school and in the wider community in which they live.

Despite some of the best legislation and policy in the world – law and policy that says

  • The best interests of the child are paramount
  • Children have the right to a name and a nationality
  • Children have the right to be treated fairly and with dignity and respect
  • Children have a right to health care
  • Children have a right to education
  • Children have the right to be safe from harm
We have read and seen in the media reports about
  • The rape and killing of children
  • Children who may not have therapy after years of abuse and exploitation because the criminal court case in which they must testify, and which has been pending for two years has not yet been finalised
  • Children born in South Africa to foreign mothers without documentation who are denied a birth document
  • Children who die in traffic accidents riding without a secure safety belt on or in the back of a bakkie
  • Children who may not attend school due to service delivery protests
  • A lack of specialist paediatric health care in many of South Africa’s health facilities and no specialised hospital for children in the provinces that collectively have 75% of South Africa’s children living in them
  • 60 Billion Rand lost to the national budget each year due to corruption.
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