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According to news sources a pair of unnamed community officers are being accused of taking nude pictures of male cadets attached to the Placencia Youth Cadet Corp, while the parents of the cadets are not taking court action against the officers, their officers in command have taken disciplinary actions against the police officers.

Their action are disturbing to say the least, as it is reported that not only did the officers forced the youth to take naked pictures but also charged them for using the restroom and drinking water. According to the head of the National Crimes Investigation Branch, Joseph Myvette, the two officers have since been placed on charged; one officer got five disciplinary charges and the other one had one single charge and both would be removed from the community policing unit.

The National Committee for Families and Children issued a release in regards to the incident and stated as follows:

Any Form of Violence against our Adolescents and Children Must Stop!

Friday, November 17, 2017, The National Committee for Families and Children, mandated to advocate for the protection of all children, is troubled by the disturbing report of a pair of police constables accused of humiliating youth cadets. According to the news dated Thursday, November 16th, 2017, the unnamed officers were accused of taking nude pictures of male cadets attached to the Placencia Branch Youth Cadet Corp. This is disheartening, especially since the public seeks the police department to ensure the safety and protection of all citizens, especially children.  When this confidence is breached, the result is the questioning of the integrity and erosion of trust of the Department to serve as the first and most fundamental line of protection. 

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child provides an umbrella for children to live with protection from harm while securing the rights of children.  Allegations that violate the rights of any child and disregards the fundamental principles of human dignity undermines the very work that NCFC and its partners continuously champion and advocate. The alleged acts against children cannot be tolerated and left unpunished.

The allegations violate Article 16 and 36 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, specifically the child’s right to privacy and the right to protection from any kind of exploitation. It further violates Article 3 of the UNCRC which states that adults should do what is in the best interest of the child. When adults make decisions, they should consider how those decisions affect children.     

As an advocate for policies, programs and an environment safe for all children, the NCFC urges the public to remain vigilant and to report cases of violations against the rights of children.  It is imperative that great care be exercised when selecting persons to work with children and in so doing, ensure that their rights and dignity is of paramount importance and duly respected. 

As a society, we must accept that children’s rights are human rights.  Upholding these rights require a complete cultural change in behavior and social norms.  Persons must also be fully aware that violations of children’s rights have repercussions often punishable under the law.         

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