Mayor Sara to create special office for children

child-rights (1)

The Davao City government here will establish an office that will implement programs specific for children and separate from those that are already being implemented by the City Social Service and Development Office (CSSDO).

This was bared by Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio following calls from a children’s rights advocacy group for the city government to establish a separate office for children’s concerns.

Duterte-Carpio said on Friday the creation of the Special Office for Children’s Concerns under the Office of the City Mayor is already a work in progress, and that she has already discussed the project with Councilor Avegayle Ortiz, chairperson of the City Council Committee on Women and Children.

Earlier, the Davao Act for Children’s Rights appealed for the full implementation of the Davao City Children’s Welfare Code. One of its provisions seeks the creation of the special office for children’s concerns.

The group, a federation of 28 organizations advocating children’s rights, said threats to children’s rights and their development will continue because the provisions of the Children’s Welfare Code are not fully implemented.

Most issues concerning children, such as abuse inside their homes, schools and community, have not been reached and cannot be acted upon by responsible authorities, according to Bernard Mondragon, chairman of the Act for Children’s Rights.

While the group cited the city’s Children’s Welfare Code as a landmark law and has drawn awards for the city, Mondragon said there is still a need to put in place a mechanism focusing on the implementation of the provisions of the law.

He said that during the Children’s Consultation organized by the Act for Children’s Alliance on July 1, the participants reviewed the law and were briefed on local initiatives addressing child abuse.

Mondragon said the participants also found the need for the city government to further strengthen the law to reduce cases of abuse of children.

The group recommended more decent jobs or livelihood for parents in vulnerable situations; effective and continuing education and awareness on how parents should care for their children; education and training on the protocol on abused and children in conflict with the law for officials enforcing laws, such as barangay officials, police, teachers and social workers; and a functional Barangay Council for the Protection of Children in all villages. (PNA)

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