Lack of child protection program

A joint United Nations and RMI government report says much needs to be done to improve child protection in the Marshall Islands.
A joint United Nations and RMI government report says much needs to be done to improve child protection in the Marshall Islands.


The lack of a child protection program in the Marshall Islands together with other factors put children at significant risk in RMI, according to a report, Ajiri in Ibunini, Child Protection Baseline Report, RMI. The report was produced by UNICEF and the RMI government with Australian government funding, and was released a couple of years ago. But we highlight some excerpts from the report as it has not received a great deal of exposure.
“Much needs to be done in the formal governmental sector, as well as in the other settings such as in homes, schools and communities, to ensure safety of children,” the report said.
“On the part of the government service providers, national and formalized systems need to be put in place for protection of children. These include child protection reporting and response system that works; a comprehensive child protection law; school child protection policy/plan for all schools; a clearly designed system for reporting child abuse and neglect; the enactment of necessary child protection laws to comply with the Convention on the Rights of the Child; and full implementation of existing laws and polices.”
The research report includes considerable reporting from surveys of various groups of Marshall Islands citizens concerning child protection issues. It says this research “shows us there is still some way to go before all children enjoy their right to protection at all times.”
“The absence of a cohesive child protection program in the RMI is evident,” the report said. “The legal framework for child protection is weak; program and services lack strategic direction and vulnerabilities facing children seem to go unattended for the most part.”
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