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Education Minister stresses need to protect children

By OPM

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Gale Rigobert

Gale Rigobert

PRESS RELEASE – Minister for Education Honourable Dr. Gale T.C. Rigobert has reiterated the Government’s commitment to the youth of the nation in the wake of Universal Children’s Day which was celebrated by several countries on Sunday, November 20, 2016.

The Minister, who recently returned to Saint Lucia from the Climate Change Conference, COP 22 in Morocco, on Monday underlined that the Government will continue to ensure there are policies and laws in place to protect the nation’s youth.

Said Dr. Rigobert: “Very often we are called to engage in some very critical introspection given some of the ghastly news that greets us. But I just want us to pause and to ask ourselves what more can we do to offer greater protection and greater opportunity for our nation’s children as a whole. We have recently appointed a new Attorney General and we have both expressed the necessity to strengthen our legal framework to offer greater levels of protection to our children. It is something that I feel very strongly about and I think as a nation we too should make it our priority.”

The Minister noted that Universal Children’s Day should signal in-depth reflection on many crosscutting issues related to children in the society.

“It is indeed cliché that the children are our future and our hope, however, it is simply the truth. So let me wish all the children of this nation, little boys and little girls a happy Universal Children’s Day.”

Dr. Rigobert called on everyone to recommit to protecting the rights of every child.

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2 comments

  1. If we make that distinction policies can easily be implemented to resolve those troublesome issues. example if we are thinking Universal Health Care, we can apply that to children in the first instance. The law does allow for youth 15 years to be employed so they come in with a different set of rights and responsibility. Another example can be with the piercing and tattooing of children, when a youth who is employed can opt to get a tattoo since he has assumed some responsibility for his welfare. However this is not the same for children who should be protected by law and not the law of their parents. They should be protected from all painful or harmful treatment especially when parents don't see how their own cultural ideology can be harmful to children. There are many other areas we can think of. I hope this government and people of St. Lucia see the wisdom in this. That the kind of decisions that could distinguish and help us move from governonce from governance. Change is needed.

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  2. Unless we do not see any wisdom in establishing a separate Ministry responsible for Children, I am gonna take all this talk as "cabarway talk." A ministry of youth will not cut it as youth can be involved in several issues which do not pertain to children such as employment, education, investment and mentoring. Meanwhile children affairs encompasses many issues which are insignificant to youth including parental, early childhood schooling and children prohibitions. If we prevent ourselves from making this obvious distinction many areas relevant to both will be neglected and will continue to mix and muddle the issues.

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