Stern action to check child abuse - Minister
Measures have been taken to curb child abuse effectively, said Child
Development and Women’s Affairs Minister Tissa Karaliyadde.
He said that President Mahinda Rajapaksa had directed that severe
action should be taken against child and women harassment when he
addressed the ministry’s progress review, meeting recently. Children’s
homes will be supervised daily by two committees chaired by Divisional
Secretaries and a senior member of civil society in the area. Children’s
homes which do not have adequate facilities and also suspected of child
abuse are being identified so that corrective measures could be taken,
He said that complaints on child abuse could be made via telephone
No. 1929 which is a 24 hour service. Women harassment could also be
informed on 1929, he said.
Probation and Childcare Commissioner Sarath Abeyagunawardene said
that a system has been installed at regional level to supervise
children’s homes which are mostly run by Non-Governmental organisations.
The Regional Child Development Committee would be chaired by the
The other committee will be headed by a prominent person of the civil
society in the area.
Religious leaders, school principals and teachers and office-bearers
of social welfare societies, representatives of children’s clubs of the
area will be other members of the committees, he said.
He said there are over 16,000 orphans in about 400 children’s homes
islandwide. Children’s homes run by the government and Provincial
Councils are exclusively for children handed over by the Childcare and
Probation Department on court orders. There are around 4.5 million
children in the island, he said.