The Child Protection and Family Services Agency (CPFSA) is renewing its call for parents and guardians experiencing challenges caring for their children, to seek help from the Agency or other parenting support groups.
The call is being made following a series of viral videos on social media of children being physically and verbally abused; the most recent involving a child seen being hit and cursed inappropriately by her alleged father.
The Agency was alerted of the incident on Monday, December 14, 2020. A team of first responders from the Agency visited the community in Runaway, St. Ann, where the child and her sibling, also seen in the video reside.
The Agency conducted an assessment of the family situation, and the necessary action was taken. They are closely being monitored by the Agency to ensure their safety.
CEO of the CPFSA, Rosalee Gage Grey, said that the Agency is cognisant of the many responsibilities and demands of parenting, especially in this current pandemic.
She is however imploring parents and guardians to make appropriate arrangements for their children, if they have to leave them because of work engagements or otherwise.
“Parental neglect is of grave concern, and is a contributing factor to the number of children reported missing. Reports from our National Children’s Registry (NCR) indicate that over 15000 reports are received annually, with behavioural issues and neglect ranking the highest”, she stressed.
Mrs. Gage Grey said the Agency currently has a Children and Family Support Unit in operation, equipped to provide support to vulnerable children and their families, or parents in need of advice raising their children. Parents and guardians are being advised to utilise the available resources.
She is encouraging citizens to report known or suspected cases of child abuse to:
- 888-PROTECT (888-776-8328)
- WhatsApp/Text: 876-878-2882
- Persons can also call or visit any of our parish offices island wide. Contact information for all our locations can be found on our website childprotection.gov.jm, and social media pages; Instagram, Facebook, Twitter @cpfsajm.