Report on Organized Activities and Efforts which Address Violence in Children’s Lives:
Need for Comprehensive Audit on Child Care Centers
Although organized activities and efforts which address violence in children are many they fail to address the true nature of violence as many organizations by themselves are perpetrators of child abuse. True, many have well defined principles, rules and regulatory framework that consists of assisting, caring, educating and counseling of children of all ages before they reach the stage of adulthood, yet unfortunately there has been an equal number, if not less, of such institutions around the world that are involved in child abuse in some way or the other. This is because there is no system or a regulatory body in operation in these countries that truly have a genuine desire to see this form of social evil being obliterated from the society. Many of the residential care units or religious organizations or NGOs or all of these have neither the necessary means nor the required standards of responsibility or accountability to justify their action towards the welfare of children under their care. To make matters worse there is no periodic checking or scrutiny into the functioning of these child care centers from outside authorities or local bodies entrusted with such a responsibility by an Act of Law. This is especially so in cases where the care units are places where the disabled children are kept. Due to these children’s lower cognitive and physical abilities they fall easy victims to the staff of the very centre where they are sheltered or by outsiders who perpetrate all sorts of abuse on the
children ranging from physical injuries, mental tortures and sexual abuses.
It has been reported from studies that children from disabilities are more often abused than ordinary children and their multiple disabilities create more additional problem as they are both a convenient target of both abuse and neglect apart from the established fact that these disabled children are also socially discriminated. (Barker and Hodes 64)
From these inferences it can be pointed out with certainty that until and unless there is a mandatory, periodic and comprehensive child welfare audit in place by an Act of Law, the violence against children would never decrease, but proliferate and it would be hard to assume that the human race in that country is anything but civilized. This also means that some hackneyed policy or some sort of gimmicks or some half hearted approach by the Government of that country would not suffice, but a willful and responsible behavior from the Government as per the rules and regulatory framework adopted by their counterparts in the civilized world. Besides, of course it should be the duty of a powerful body consisting of experienced and dedicated task force to identify the perpetrators of the shameful crime against children and punish them by fast track legal proceedings and even ban them. The task force should be manned by highly skilled persons from various fields including management professionals, social activists, psychologists, criminologists, advocates and others who have the necessary skill to tackle child abuse cases either hidden or otherwise. Trained counselors from this team should conduct not only periodic checks in these institutions, but also make concerted actions in all identifiable areas where such violence against children can take place. In this context it must be pointed out that the school or the educational institute of a country has a tremendous responsibility of making the child aware and also strictly implement proper rules of conduct such that the very place of education by itself does not become a haven for child abuse and violence against juveniles. This is more so because in several developing countries and those under going constant wars, the educational institutes has become a excellent ground for perpetrators of child abuse and violence and this happens with the connivance of the teachers and staff. Authors Horton and Cruise states that it would be an excellent idea if the child welfare counselors could provide some basis for interaction between teachers and parents as a good preventive measure for child abuse and their recurrence (113).
It has also been seen that the violence against children and abusive instances are more in developing than in the developed world. This is quite true for in several developing countries there is no Government by an electoral mandate and are either ruled by blood thirsty military dictators or are in constant wars with their neighbors or have no proper governance. In case of developed and richer nations the laws to a great extent are in place yet in spite of all this there are still several instances of child abuse and violence in these countries. Of late it has also been identified that apart from violent act on juveniles and children at care institutions there is yet another instance of child abuse both at homes and care centers and these are due to affluence of the population residing in these countries. An image is emerging that shows abuse along with affluence slowly increasing and this is more due to the expectations from growth of children and these require new guidelines as per law and has to be dealt with psychologically, socially and politically (Cooper 2).
It is quite certain that instances of child abuse in institutions and care centers would remain as long as man’s mindset does not change. Yet it quite certain that a comprehensive child welfare audit and program can significantly reduce the rate of crimes against children.
Barker Judy and Deborah T. Hodes. “The Child in Mind”: A Child Protection Handbook:
New York. Routledge. 2003. Ch. 10.
Cooper M. David. “Child Abuse Revisited”: Children, Society and Social Work.
Buckingham and Philadelphia. Open University Press. 1993. Ch. 1.
Horton Burrows Connie. “Child Abuse and Neglect”: The School’s Response.
New York. London. Guilford Press. 2001. Ch. 6.