Associated Press Service
ISLAMABAD:Nov 23,2018- While the world observes the Universal Children’s Day, the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) also celebrated it by holding an interactive seminar on the awareness and prevention of child sexual abuse in schools. The aim is to engage with schools, teachers, children and human rights activists on this important theme. The following Speakers were invited to speak on Child Sexual Abuse in Schools.
Haseeb Khawaja (Activist, Consultant & Documentary Filmmaker) said, “There should be an official independent resource person outside the school for a child and parent to talk about it complaint about possible sexual abuse because police can be paid to change story, so that is not best source for reprieve.”
He further said, “Once anyone in the education system loses their job over sexual abuse, whether convicted or not, they should not be recycled back in the school system. Moreover, sex-abuse prevention classes/ lectures/ trainings should be mandated for all teachers, and should be part of mandatory ‘Intro classes’ for kids aged 6 to 18.”
He also added, “There is no Electronic Sex-Offender Database where these abusers are registered, so they don’t mingle back into society.”
Samina Sardar (Head of Child Protection Unit, British Council, Pakistan) said, “Teachers can play an important role in empowering children in their own protection which will contribute to prevention of abuse. Developing and implementing safeguarding policies at every institution where children come to learn or play must be mandatory and implementation must be monitored by the Government.”
Aliya Syed [Rotary Club of Islamabad (Metropolitan) & CDO Pakistan (Community Development Organization)] said, “Legislation & implementation is required to save our children. Schools can play an important role in stopping child abuse for which the teachers must be trained to impart Life Skills Training to their students. Every School/ Day Care Centre & Madrassah must develop a policy, learn how abusers operate, notice people behaviour & train to act if they find or see anything unsafe for children.”
People present on the occasion included Haseeb Khawaja (Activist), Samina Sardar (British Council), Aliya Syed [Rotary Club & CDO], Tahira Abdullah (Human Rights Activist), Ms. Saiqa (Rozan), Asiya Arif Khan (SPARC), Jameela Shahid (SAHIL), Ms. Irsa (SAHIL), Ms. Snober (Counselor & Foster Carer), several teachers & students and other concerned citizens.
At the end of the session, a hands-on session was held with school children that how to protect themselves from sexual abuse.
The seminar of HRCP (Human Rights Commission of Pakistan) has been co-organized & moderated by Haseeb Khawaja (Activist, Consultant & Documentary Filmmaker).