Violence, neglect forcing children work on streets


VIOLENCE against children is becoming a serious issue with many being neglected and forced to work on the streets to survive.
Western Highlands child protection officer Peter Nepiel said violence against children was taking place in families, settlements and schools.
Nepiel urged village elders, councillors, church leaders and authorities to address issues affecting children.
He said child abuse included rape, sexual assault, beating, starvation and the use of abusive language.
Nepiel said Papua New Guinea became the 194th country in 1993 to join the United Nations and signed an agreement to support policies on children’s issues.
Parliament passed the Lukautim Pikinini Act in 2015 to safeguard the rights and what is best for a child.
“Children  have the right to live under a roof with parents or guardians without facing any form of violence,” Nepiel said.
“Children have a right to a bright future. They have the right to go to school. It’s no good seeing a child with dirty clothes in a classroom which distracts them from studying.”