THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Kerala should do away with its soft state syndrome with child abusers, said S M Vijayanand, Additional Chief Secretary and Director of the Institute of Management in Government. Speaking at the release function of the ‘The State of the World’s Children-2012’ report of the UNICEF here on Thursday, Vijayanand said that effective legislation was needed to ensure a safe environment to children. “Programmes for child welfare should also address the issues of loneliness and alienation,” he said.
The UNICEF report is highly relevant in the state as the urban rural divide is fast disappearing, opined UNICEF State Office for Tamil Nadu and Kerala chief Dr Satish Kumar. He released the report by handing over a copy to Social Welfare Department principal secretary K M Abraham.
P O George, chairperson of the Child Welfare Committee, Thrissur, presented a report on the situation of children in Kerala. “The biggest challenges faced by the state are the influx of migrant children and child abuse,” George said. Hundreds of children from Odisha, Bengal, Bihar and Chattisgarh are reaching the state every week. While the boys are engaged in small industries and commercial establishments, girls are employed as housemaids, he said.
George said that child abuses were rising on an alarming rate in the state. “The report on the abuse of a one-year-old child shows how worst the situation is. Time has come to take effective steps to prevent atrocities on children,” he said.