The Human Rights Commission of the Maldives (HRCM) stated that the approval of the Child Rights Protection Bill and the Juvenile Justice Bill by the parliament signals great progress in the protection of the rights of children.
While announcing the organisation's decision to observe the World Day for the Prevention of Child Abuse, HRCM stated that purpose of marking the day is to raise awareness of the cause and strengthen preventative efforts while empowering people to stand against it.
They also state that the approval of the Child Rights Protection Bill and the Juvenile Justice Bill laid a foundation for preventative efforts against child abuse.
The statement regarding the World Day for the Prevention of Child Abuse further stated statistics revealing the high number of child abuse cases reported to state authorities. This includes cases of neglect, psychological and physical abuse, as well as sexual abuse from family members or strangers. Additionally, it highlights the neglect from authorities regarding child abuse cases as well as cases of child abuse within institutions meant to protect them.
The statement further added that arrangements to house juveniles separately from adult offenders to reduce the risk of recidivism and encourage them to return as contributing members of society must be strengthened.
They also appeal for accessible arrangements for psychological therapy to victims of physical and psychological abuse.
Moreover, HRCM called for the establishment of arrangements to reduce the long investigation period of child abuse cases, resulting in evidence getting destroyed and justice being denied for victims. Additionally, they call for swift action against child offenders to provide justice for victims.
In their concluding remarks, the organisation reminded the public that it is the duty of every citizen to protect the rights and interests of children as they the country's future.
They further call on to the relevant authorities, organisations and media to increase the scope of work in this area.