OCA launches helpline for children to report abuse

Diahann Gordon Harrison
Come January, children will be able to report abuse via a helpline that has been launched by the Office of the Children's Advocate (OCA).
Children's Advocate Diahann Gordon Harrison made the disclosure on Friday.
Mrs Gordon Harrison said final arrangements are being made to establish the helpline.
"We have signed the MOU. We have started the background work, because one thing that is very critical is that we don't want it to be a flash in the pan, and a response that's prematurely launched without all the nuts and bolts to make it sustainable. And so, the background work has started from as far back as I think June and we should be in a position to officially operationalise in January," she revealed on the Morning Agenda on Power 106.
Preliminary reports of child abuse to the National Children's Registry in March fell by 28 per cent compared to the previous month, signalling to welfare authorities that hundreds of children might be at greater risk of exploitation and neglect amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Some 842 reports were received, compared to 1,163 in February. 
A Gleaner analysis also showed that reports of child abuse in March declined by 30 per cent compared to a year earlier.

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