The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) on Monday, Nov. 22, called on public and private sectors to work together towards the promotion and protection of children at risk (CAR) and children in conflict with the law (CICL).
DSWD Secretary Rolando Joselito D. Bautista made the call during the Juvenile Justice and Welfare Consciousness Week (JJWEEK) virtual press briefing on Monday.
“As we celebrate this year’s JJWEEK, let us be reminded that everyone’s participation is an essential tool in creating an enabling environment wherein children can thrive and feel protected,” he said in his opening message.
Bautista sits as the chairperson of the Juvenile Justice and Welfare Council (JJWC).
The DSWD and JJWC are leading the nation’s celebration of the 10th JJWeek celebration from Nov. 21 to 27, which focuses on children’s involvement and participation under the new normal. It is anchored on the theme “Batang Handa at May Alam, Kaisa sa Pagharap sa Bagong Normal.”
“The message of the celebration is a clear recognition of the importance of empowering children to participate in promoting their rights and in facing the challenges brought by prolonged impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Bautista said.
He said nation’s observance of the JJWEEK highlighted the need to protect, respect and uphold the rights of every Filipino child, especially those at risk or CAR and the CICL.
“Every family should nurture their children responsibly. The education system should work together with the community and government in the prevention of children being in conflict with the law and in their rehabilitation and reintegration,” the DSWD chief stressed.
He noted that Local Councils for the Protection of Children (LCPC) should coordinate with and assist the local government units (LGUs) for the adoption of a comprehensive plan on the prevention of children from being in conflict with the law, and to oversee its implementation.
LCPC is organized at the provincial, city, municipal and barangay levels to serve as the umbrella organization for all children’s concerns.
Bautista reminded the LGUs and the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) to ensure the appointment of a licensed social worker to assist CICLs, and coordinate with the LCPC in the formulation and implementation of juvenile intervention and diversion programs in the community, respectively.
“For the DSWD, the Department is ready to provide technical assistance and resource augmentation to LGUs to ensure that the Juvenile Justice Welfare Act is implemented accordingly,” he said.
He likewise urged the media “to actively promote children’s rights by protecting the identity of children and reporting balanced news that are not detrimental to their dignity and welfare.”
Bautista noted that the JJWC prepared various JJWEEK activities wherein children can actively participate.
“Lastly, as we mark a decade of JJWEEK observance, let us continue to work together towards the promotion and protection of the rights of CAR and CICL as well as to the improvement of their future, because the children are the future of our nation,” he said in closing.
The annual celebration of the JJWeek is provided under Presidential Proclamation No. 489 series of 2012 and Republic Act No. 10661 declaring November as the National Children’s Month.
READ MORE: https://mb.com.ph/2021/11/18/dswd-jjwc-to-continue-raising-awareness-promoting-childrens-rights/