Iohannis: 16,000 children every year - victims of abuse; we have obligation to prevent trauma

Bucharest, Nov 20 /Agerpres/ - President Klaus Iohannis said that every year 16,000 children are victims of abuse, neglect, exploitation and other forms of violence, noting that all instruments, including legal ones, need to be used to prevent trauma. "Unfortunately, stigma, discrimination and abuse unfortunately are real, serious problems that cannot be tolerated in any way! Every year, 16,000 children are victims of abuse, neglect, exploitation and any other form of violence. We have an obligation to raise awareness of the trauma to which these children are subjected and to use all the tools, including the legal ones, to prevent them," Iohannis said on Friday at the Cotroceni Palace, after a meeting with the president of the National Authority for Rights of Disabled People, Children and Adoptions (ANDPDCA), Madalina Turza, and with the president of the Institutionalized Youth Council, Andreeas Novacovici. He appreciated the fact that the civil society cooperates closely with the ANDPDCA. "Every child must be protected and have an equal chance of reaching his/her potential. Therefore, the principles of non-discrimination, the right to life and development, respect for the opinions and interests of children must be constantly on the public agenda, be found in the practices of institutions of any kind, but also of the citizens in their daily life," added the head of state. President Iohannis pointed out that the topics discussed with the representatives of ANDPDCA and the Institutionalized Youth Council concerned, among other things, the access of children in the social protection system to various services, such as health, especially in the context of the COVID-19 epidemic but also the support for an independent life, especially through measures related to education, vocational training and the provision of adequate housing. "Our development as a society, that Educated Romania we want, cannot be sustainable unless we invest in education and in the protection of the rights of children and young people. This must be approached also in terms of ensuring consistent funding, both nationally and locally. Equally, the protection of children and young people must be found in courtrooms, where all forms of violence and abuse should be severely punished," he said. He added that, on Friday evening, symbolically, the Cotroceni Palace will be illuminated in blue, as part of the UNICEF Romania campaign, to mark the Children Rights Day. AGERPRES (RO - author: Florentina Peia, editor: Mihai Simionescu; EN - author: Bogdan Gabaroi; editor: Adina Panaitescu)

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