Children denied rights

National, Normal

The National – Friday, December 17, 2010

THE rights of youths in the country are not being recognised and respected although PNG is a signatory to the United Nations Convention on Human Rights.
“Their rights aren’t respected, it’s easy to condemn them but why can’t we give them the dignity they need?” director of the National AIDS Council Secretariat (NACS) Wep Kanawi raised this week.
He said it was defined clearly in the law but PNG was not doing enough to help youths exercise their rights democratically.
He challenged guests at the launch of the “National HIV prevention & sexuality education for out of school young people” on Wednesday on what they were doing about the issue in the country.
“Parents are the worst, they dismantle the rights of children in their homes. They have to create a loving environment,” he stressed.
“Parents are born with bias in their minds, we do that on a daily basis but how are we going to dismantle the disparities in their (youths) minds?” he asked again.
Kanawi said that it was a “tragedy” that there was no policy in the country that looked after unemployed youths.
He told representatives from partner agencies and other stakeholders that youths in PNG need to be empowered
“Youth movement in PNG is still the same, people say they (youths) need a kick up the butt but we also need to look at their needs,” Kanawi added.
He pointed out the need for the establishment of a National Youth Volunteer Service in the country and suggested that unemployed youths be engaged in providing community services as employment.
He suggested the government could provide incentives such as food and basic needs as payment to the youths for their services.