Ministry of Culture, Gender,
Entertainment and Sport

Government of Jamaica
Hanna Directs CDA to Intensify Community Interventions
Published by: Marvel Gordon
Reference #: myc192
Date Published: Tuesday 17, Mar 2015

March 17, 2015, Kingston - The Ministry of Youth and Culture is reporting that the Office of the Children’s Registry (OCR) receives approximately two hundred and twenty reports of child abuse per week; 11, 440 per year.  The parishes accounting for the majority of the abuses are Westmoreland, KSA, St Catherine and St James.  

The OCR assesses these reports and then forwards them to the Child Development Agency (CDA).  Since 2014, the CDA has investigated and cleared 4,000 cases of the 7,000 backlog while still having to deal with current cases of child abuse reported.

Minister Hanna states, “Every year, we continue to see a rise in the numbers of our nation’s children who are reported as being abused.”

The CDA will now hire additional investigators on a temporary basis to investigate and clear the number of child abuse cases that are reported on a daily basis.

The CDA and the Ministry will continue to investigate all reports, however, because reports are not coming in on a timely basis from some areas where community members are aware of the child abuse, the Minister has directed the CDA to focus and target specific communities across the island that have known cases of child abuse that are not being reported to the state.

Head of the CDA, Rosalee Gage-Grey indicates that the recently reported case of the 12-year-old in Clarendon is presently under investigation and the child has been placed under the care of the state and is now receiving psycho-social care. However, she went on to say that this is not an isolated case as we have had several reports of minors who have been sexually molested and impregnated, one as young as 10 years old.  

In keeping with the zero tolerance approach of the Ministry of Youth and Culture, Mrs Gage-Grey discloses that an internal review with respect to the case in question will be carried out. If it has been discovered that any of the officers involved in the investigations have been found to be negligent or derelict in their duties, the necessary disciplinary action will be taken.
 
The Minister of Youth and Culture is appealing to our service partners, including prescribed persons to report cases of child abuse and encourages citizens all across the island to continue to be our eyes and ears on the ground.

Source: Ministry of Youth and Culture

Hanna Directs CDA to Intensify Community Interventions