JIS News

A three-digit toll-free telephone number, for reporting emergencies involving suspected cases of child abuse, is to be put into operation before the end of the year.
The Office of the Children’s Registry (OCR), is fast-tracking this action, so that the service can be made available to the public within weeks. The OCR will also have in place, a public education programme, on procedures to report child abuse cases before the end of the year.
This development is coming fast on the heels of Prime Minister, Bruce Golding’s, request that all Government agencies that impact on child safety, develop a joint strategy to identify, prevent and curb child abuse.
The Prime Minister met this week at Jamaica House, for an update with representatives of the Task Force. Reporting to the Prime Minister on its activities, the Social Development Commission noted that it had consultations with more than 50 community groups across the island and circulated 20,000 copies of a simplified version of the Child Care and Protection Act.
The Transport Authority (TA), a member of the task force, reported that it has mounted a national campaign through print advertisements in national newspapers and radio commercials on popular programmes, to inform the public about using only legal taxis.
The programme seeks to make commuters more aware of identifying and using only licensed taxis – those with red registration plates. Under the programme, commuters are urged to take legal taxis driven by persons who are registered public vehicle operators. These drivers must wear an identification card which is current.
The Prime Minister reviewed the progress made by the Task Force, and has instructed the OCS and the Local Government Ministry, to coordinate the initiatives of all agencies in an operational framework, so that all the relevant mechanisms are in place to protect our children. The committee is due to meet again before the end of the year.

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