Ghana Police develops concept on child friendly policing

Police2The Ghana Police Service (GPS) has developed a curriculum on Child Friendly Policing, to be taught in all the police training schools across the country as part of efforts to integrate it into the Service.

This, it said was to give quality training on children’s rights and protection to enable personnel of the Service handle issues which came before them, as far as children’s rights were concerned. Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) George Appiah-Sakyi, Central Regional Coordinator of the Domestic Violence, Victims Support Unit (DOVVSU) of the GPS disclosed this at a roundtable with stakeholders on the implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.

The forum, organised by the Ghana NGOs Coalition on the Rights of the Child was attended by child rights stakeholders in the Region including the Department of Children and the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice.

The rest were the Ghana Education Service, Ghana Health Service, Department of Community Development, DOVVSU as well as civil society organisations (CSOs).

It was aimed at assessing the level of implementation with respect to the Convention on the Rights of the Child at both district and regional levels and to give account on their specific contributions to the full implementation of the document concluding observations of the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child.

DSP Appiah -Sakyi said the integration was to improve children’s access to justice,address ethical issues often faced by law enforcement personnel as far as children were concerned and develop a standard operating procedure for handling children.

He said though child friendly activities were being undertaken in the Service, it had been done by specialised units such as DOVVSU.

He said the integration would made it possible for every police personnel to handle cases relating to children.

Mrs Felicia Tetteh, Childcare Assistant at the Department of Social Welfare (DSW) said the Department had closed down 19 orphanages and children’s homes in the Region within the past three months for operating below standard.

She said research undertaken by the Department indicated that many children in the orphanages were not orphans but rather poor and irresponsible parents dumped them in such institutions.

She said some non-governmental organisations were taken advantage of the situation.

The DSW had therefore introduced new policies to streamline activities of orphanages, foster and children’s homes in order to eliminate unqualified operators to ensure the safety of children in such institutions.

Mrs Tetteh noted that lack of parental control was a major challenge in the Region especially in the Cape Coast metropolis as DSW continued to record many maintenance cases especially during the months of September and October.

She said the Department had set up a team to advise and monitor parents to ensure that they took full responsibility of their children and cared for them appropriately.

Mrs Baaba Brew Fleischer, the immediate past National President of the Ghana NGOs Coalition on the Rights of the Child expressed satisfaction about the inputs of the participants.

She said the outcome of the discussion would benefit the Government to be able to effectively report to the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child on the progress made in implementing the concluding observations of the committee.

She said such discussions were useful because it offered the NGOs and CSOs the opportunity to share ideas together so as to adequately embark on their advocacy.

Source: GNA

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