Violence against children
Violence against children is a gross abuse of their human rights and can never be justified, yet it remains a major problem in Thailand.
Violence against children includes physical and mental abuse and injury, neglect or negligent treatment, exploitation and sexual abuse. Violence against children can take place in homes, schools, orphanages, residential care facilities, on the streets, in the workplace, in prisons and in places of detention.Children who are the most at-risk of violence are those:
• living in households where others are victims or perpetrators of violence;
• suffering from illnesses, injuries or disabilities;
• living in households affected by illegal drugs, alcohol and gambling addiction;
• living in broken families.
Violence remains a harsh reality for millions of children around the world and has long-lasting negatives consequences for children. Violence hampers children’s development, learning ability and school performance; it inhibits positive relationships, provokes low self-esteem, emotional distress and depression. It undermines children’s capacity to functional adults and good parents later in life. In the most severe cases, violence against children leads to death.
Violence against children remains widespread in Thailand. In 2013, more than 19,000 children were treated at provincial hospitals due to abuse, about 70 per cent of them were treated for sexual abuse. In many cases, sexual abuse occurred at home by the children’s family members.
Corporal punishment is another common form of violence against children in schools in Thailand. Despite Ministry of Education and National Committee on Child Protection regulations prohibiting any inhumane or violent punishment of students, corporal punishment is still used in many schools around the country. Video clips of teachers canning students often appear in media reports even though substantial research has shown that children who experience abuse, neglect and/or violence in school have significantly lower levels of academic achievement.What we do
UNICEF supported Mahidol University to develop a Child Protection and Monitoring System (CPMS) which has been installed in 135 sub-districts (Tambon) in southern, central and northeast Thailand. The system contains information of every child in each sub-district and identifies children who are at risk of or who have been victimized by violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation. So far, information of nearly 150,000 children have been recorded in the system.
UNICEF also provides training for sub-district and provincial officials including social workers on how to prevent violence against children in the community and to appropriately respond when a child is at risk of becoming or has become a victim of violence or abuse or exploitation.Our goal
Under the leadership of the government, Child Protection and Monitoring system is expanded to all sub-districts across Thailand which prevents and addresses cases of exploitation, neglect, violence and abuse.