Govt to introduce new policy document | Sunday Observer

Govt to introduce new policy document

4 June, 2017
 Pic: Saman Sri Wedage    Minister Chandrani Bandara speaking at the launch
Pic: Saman Sri Wedage Minister Chandrani Bandara speaking at the launch

The government will introduce a new policy document on child care, child protection and child alternative care, to support necessary amendments to the Children (Judicial Protection) Bill, Minister of Women and Child Affairs, Chandani Bandara said.

“We have proposed to include a bill of rights in the Constitution with a special clause to include child rights and protection,” the Minister said at the launch of the National Partnership to End Violence against Children (NPEVAC).

The draft National Policy on Child Protection is currently being finalized.

NPEVAC, a new initiative to end violence against children by 2030 was recently launched as part of a bold, new collaborative partnership between the government, UN agencies, international organisations, civil society, faith groups, the private sector, the media, children and other key stakeholders.

Over 9,000 instances of violence involving children were reported to the National Child Protection Authority (NCPA) in 2016. Children in Sri Lanka are exposed to multiple forms of violence in their homes, schools, online and in their communities currently.

Studies highlighted that 40 percent of parents surveyed in the Colombo district admitted physically abusing their child, 14 percent of adolescent girls and boys surveyed had experienced some form of sexual abuse and 311 percent of adolescent boys and 25 percent of adolescent girls surveyed had experienced emotional abuse.

Minister Chandrani Bandara said, “This partnership to end violence against children creates a vital window of opportunity for Sri Lanka to share our success, discuss challenges and exchange knowledge. The common misconception is that violence occurs outside of a child’s immediate circle of trust but evidence suggests that cruelty occurs from members of his or her inner circle.”

Sri Lanka as one of the ‘path-finding’ countries is taking the lead globally to end violence including abuse, neglect and exploitation against children by 2030. This commitment is part of the Global Partnership to End Violence against Children and supports the country’s drive to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

While Sri Lanka has worked on a number of initiatives to protect children from physical and sexual abuse, neglect and exploitation, the discussion paper makes further recommendations to accelerate efforts to end violence against children.