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Revealed: The shocking level of child abuse in T&T

Trinidad Express / The Children’s Authority of Trinidad and Tobago will this week mark two years since becoming operational.

According to a statement issued on Tuesday, since May 18, 2015 to now, the organisation has received more than 40,000 calls from the public.

Of those calls, 10,000 have been identified as potential cases of child abuse.

In some instances the Authority’s hotline may have received multiple reports of abuse regarding one child.

The investigation aspect of the Authority’s work was critical to identifying whether a child was at risk or a victim of abuse or neglect.

The Authority said that to date, almost 8,000 cases are receiving attention and so far, over 3,000 investigations have been completed and more than 700 families have been counselled.

Additionally, the Authority has licensed nine children’s homes and over 300 visits have been conducted at more than 40 Community Residences throughout Trinidad and Tobago, to ensure compliance with legislative standards.

The Authority said it was aware that there is a distressing level of unmet needs.

“This has been exacerbated by the inadequacy of infrastructure, manpower, finances, accommodation for children in conflict with the law, transition homes, facilities for children with special needs, as well as a high case load and limited placement options for children in imminent danger.

Despite these drawbacks, the Authority is thankful for the support given by the Office of the Prime Minister (Gender and Child Affairs) to help it deliver services to children and their families. The collaboration with various agencies within the child protection sector has also been critical to the Authority in delivering on its mandate”.

Anyone who suspects child abuse can call the Police at 999 or the Authority’s hotlines at 996 or 800-2014.

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