Friday, April 19, 2024
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Staggering stats on abuse of women in Fiji

Two out of three women suffer face violence in Fiji, or 64 per cent of women face some form of violence in their lifetime.

Also, four out of five children, or 83 per cent of our children, are facing some form of abuse or violence.

This has been highlighted by the Minister for Women and Children, Lynda Tabuya in Parliament yesterday.

Tabuya said the Child Welfare Act (CWA) database reported in 2022 a total of almost 2,000 cases. This was a 29 per cent increase from 2021, which was 1,500 cases report.

According to the statistics for 2022:

  • 54 per cent of child victims were girls
  • 68 per cent were child neglect, physical abuse and sexual abuse
  • 58 per cent of the child victims were below the age of 12
  • 7 per cent of the child victims were below the age of one
  • 80 per cent of the perpetrators are known to the victims and of that 80 per cent, 60 per cent are immediate family members.

“For this year alone, a total of almost a thousand cases have been reported between the months of January to July. In the same period last year, it was a total of 1,200 cases. This was a decrease compared to 2022.”

Tabuya said the Government recognises the importance of establishing a dedicated Department for Children to effectively address increasing incidents of social issues involving children.

She said $100,000 has been allocated to establish the Department for Children where a Director for Children, Principal Officer and another officer to start the office.

The Minister also highlighted that in its partnership with UNICEF, USP, FNU and MFAT, they are launching the Violence Against Children in Fiji Report, this month – the joint research is focused on children in the home setting.

“The majority of the perpetrators are family members. The report provides an indication of geographical hotspots by type of violation. This study represents a significant and timely step forward in the protection of children in Fiji.”

“The report provides clear recommendations on the need for a whole of Government and society approach and improves coordination across our key ministries.”

“Child abuse in all its forms exists in Fiji, and we have heard the recent statistics and trends are very worrying trends. The Ministry will continue to work with our stakeholders to increase awareness on child abuse and neglect,” Tabuya added.

Ilaitia Ravuwai
Ilaitia Ravuwai
Journalist | news@fijilive.com

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