Child protection officers need proper identification

Child protection officers must have some form of identification when going out to rural communities and settlements to carry out their job.

Central Province Community Development advisor and child protection officer, Tabu Vaira said they are not protected and are often abused when in the communities.

Vaira said this is their biggest challenge, calling on the Department for Community Development, Youth and Religion to address this issue.

“We’ve been welfare officers before, going out to carry out child protection services under police escorts for our safety.

“Speaking from experience, when we get into communities as welfare officers, we are usually abused.

“They treat us as just welfare officers and don’t see and understand the importance of what we do.

“We need ID cards and uniforms where we are recognised as child protection officers and be recognised by the community,” Vaira said.

Vaira was among 38 welfare officers from the National Capital District, Central Province and Motu Koita that graduated on Tuesday with certificates in child protection.

This followed a one week training based on the National Child Protection Policy 2017-2027 and how it should be implemented.

The policy specifically aims to see child protection system coordination and that leadership at all levels of government is improved.

Quintina Naime