Jamaica: Child abuse on the rise

The number of child abuse reports in Jamaica increased dramatically in 2008, the nation's Office of Children's Registry reported Saturday.
The office received 3,784 child abuse reports last year, up from only 425 complaints in 2007, a significant increase for a nation with a population of about 2.8 million.
OCR Registrar Carla Edie told the Jamaican government news service, JIS, that the people of Jamaica have become "increasingly mindful of their legal responsibility to report such incidents," and are increasingly concerned about child safety, given a recent trend of violence against minors in the country.
According to JIS, a police report issued late last year said that, between January 1, 2008 and November 1, 2008, 73 children were murdered and 383 cases of carnal abuse were reported.
Flogging and other forms of physical abuse are a part of Jamaican culture, Justice Minister Dorothy Lightbourne told JIS in an interview. Read more

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