|There is law, but no protection for the childrenChildren trafficking, violence in schools and in family, abuse of child labor, street life ... Each year increasing numbers of complaints and reports of violations of children's rights. The competent institutions still claim that children do not know their rights and that many cases remain undetected. Ignorance and incomplete enforcement of laws have caused children not to be protected as it should. These conclusions marked yesterday's International Day of the Child.
The First Children's Embassy in the World Megjashi says that despite numerous attempts to improve the rights of children and numerous legislative amendments, still children's rights are not fully protected.
Ombudsman visits schools and tries to familiarize children with their rights.
With the changes in the law of the Ombudsman children may submit complaints to us of violating their rights. But that has not happened yet. Mainly on their behalf that has been done by their parents - says Nevenka Krusharovska, deputy ombudsman who works precisely on this issue.
She believes that the number of complaints of violence against children in the family and in schools is growing from year to year.
Especially the number of complaints of physical violence against children in schools is increasing. But schools often do not take measures to sanction such phenomena and do not file criminal charges, sometimes we do that but sometimes we have to inform the State Education Inspectorate, which files charges against the teacher who committed violence but also against the school that did not take any measures – says Krusharovska.
Psychical violence against children in schools is probably more common, but difficult to prove. The situation is the same with the violence in the family. Evidence of physical violence is easily found.
The problem we have with the courts, which are seeking solid evidence to be able to give a temporary measure – taking away the child. We had one or two cases of sexual violence in the family when the court took away parental rights - says Krusharovska.
The abuse of child labor often remains undeclared and without penalty. The parents are forcing their children to work. The Ombudsman seeks street children to enter as a separate protected category and to open special centers where they are treated - children addicted to drugs and also children trafficking. In Macedonia each year more than 1,000 children are victims of sexual assaults by their parents, relatives, friends or neighbors. Statistics for beaten children – are not available. Around 18,000 children under 18 years do not attend school. About 2,000 children are at the streets and they are often victims of the worst forms of abuse. Excluded from the educational process, they are mostly victims of sexual abuse of pedophilia, children trafficking and whose labor is abused.