Child rights commission wants rehabilitation policy changed

June 14th, 2008 - 1:21 pm ICT by IANS  


New Delhi, June 14 (IANS) Noting that development programmes in disaster and conflict zones don’t take into account the impact of tragedies on children, the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) has suggested changes in the national rehabilitation policy. NCPCR chairperson Shantha Sinha told IANS that shd has suggested modifications in the National Policy for Resettlement and Rehabilitation of Project Affected Families of 2003 and the National Rehabilitation Policy of 2006.

Sinha said that in a letter to Minister for Rural Development Raghuvansh Prasad last month, she pointed out that a review of the status of children who have been displaced due to conflicts needs to be taken into account.

“Often children are left hungry, malnourished, without access to food and health facilities. Children in schools are pushed out of the education system. The commission wants to make a presentation to the parliamentary committee on rehabilitation on the importance of having a child rights perspective,” the letter said.

It added that the preamble to the national rehabilitation policy should state that “displacement can lead to violation of children’s rights in relation to their access to nutrition, education, health and other facilities”.

The commission has sought the inclusion of the departments of women and child, social justice, labour and human resource development in overseeing the national rehabilitation policy.

A new clause, which the commission has said should be included in the policy, is to do a survey and make a list of children in each of the affected families enumerating their state of health, nutrition and education.

“It should be the responsibility of the administrator for resettlement to ensure that the plan contains provisions for setting up schools, hostels, Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) centres, bridge schools and to make available the necessary resources for these facilities,” said the letter.

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