SAPS protecting children 365 days

JUNE 4, 2016

The South African Police Service (SAPS) is committed to ensuring the safety, well-being, care and protection of children through an integrated multi-disciplinary approach.

“The protection of our children is everyone’s business and responsibility and the police urge the community to continue to report any suspected child abuse, neglect or exploitation, not only during Child Protection Week but when and where ever there are any suspicions to your nearest police station or to SAPS Crime Stop 08600 10111,” SAPS spokesperson Brigadier Vish Naidoo said on Friday.

With Child Protection Week in full swing, until Sunday, the men and women in blue are visiting various schools, clinics, taxi ranks and churches countrywide as part of the campaign.

“The Division Visible Policing together with provinces identifies problematic areas with regard to various crimes that impact on children.”

Naidoo said during the visits, SAPS members will cover a variety of topics, including sexual abuse of children, the importance of reporting child abuse to the police and how, when and where to report child abuse in order to raise crime awareness.

The Ministries for Police and Basic Education signed the Protocol on Crime and Violence in Schools on April 2011.

The Protocol on Crime and Violence in Schools, among others, aims to ensure safer schools which is the cornerstone of the National Development Plan and the SAPS is responsible for the implementation there of.

“In terms of Protocol on Crime and Violence in Schools, the SAPS and DBE are required to ensure that schools are linked to police stations and to ensure that there are proactive crime prevention activities undertaken at those particular stations such as regular searches and campaigns on the effects of substance abuse,” Naidoo said.

The SAPS has also partnered with other Departments like the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development (DOJCD) and the Department of Social Development (DSD) among others, to engage in activities.

Naidoo said the SAPS is playing a critical role in so far as the implementation of the Child Justice Act is concerned to ensure that children in conflict with the law do not become secondary victims of the system.

Other initiatives include the Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences (FCS) units which also continuously conduct crime awareness campaigns as part of the unit’s day-to-day activities.

“The operations comprises efforts aimed at addressing and combating abuse against children, educating the public about the importance of protecting children and channels available within the SAPS for reporting child abuse,” said Naidoo, adding that the awareness campaigns are conducted in line with children’s rights as articulated in the Children's Act of 2005 (Act No. 38 of 2005).

The SAPS and the FCS units were re-established in June 2010 and comprises a Forensic Social Work Section to ensure effectiveness and efficiency in combating crimes against women and children.

The units also provide support that encourages victims to report crimes against women and children.