High Prevalence of Child Abuse in East Asia-Pacific

Human Wrongs Watch

The high prevalence of physical abuse is causing long-term damage to the lives of far too many children in East Asia and the Pacific, warns a new report by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

Credit: UNICEF

The report, Child Maltreatment: Prevalence, Incidence and Consequences in East Asia and Pacific, analyzes a series of studies undertaken by experts and academics over the past decade on child maltreatment in the region.
“Child maltreatment has harmful long-term consequences, not only for the children suffering the abuse, but also for the families and societies in which they live,” UNICEF’s Regional Child Protection Specialist, Amalee McCoy, said in a news release.
“Understanding the prevalence of child maltreatment is a first step towards identifying the right measures to make every child in the region safer.”
850 Million Children in East Asia-Pacific

There are currently some 580 million children in the East Asia–Pacific region, representing one quarter of the world’s children, living in some of the most densely populated and culturally diverse places in the world, the UN reports.

The report reveals that although the frequency of physical abuse of children varies from country to country and from study to study, the best case scenario suggests that one in 10 children experience physical abuse, while the worst case finds that 30.3 per cent of children suffer from abuse.

Severe physical abuse includes beatings, including those inflicted by fists or implements, which result in physical injury.

Child Maltreatment

According to UNICEF, the consistently high prevalence of child maltreatment throughout a region with such a large number of children was “distressing.”

In addition, amongst other findings, the report found that between 14 and 30 per cent of the region’s boys and girls report experiencing forced sex, and for many young people their first experiences of sexual intercourse is forced.

“We need to strengthen national child protection systems to protect children who are already experiencing harm, and to create environments where abuse is prevented and the risks of violence to children are mitigated,” McCoy said.

The damage to children caused by sexual and physical abuse is often very serious and lifelong, UNICEF notes.

Children who are abused, neglected, exploited or experience violence are more likely to be depressed and experience other types of mental health problems, to think about or attempt suicide, to have more physical symptoms – both medically explained and unexplained – and to engage in more high-risk behaviours than their non-abused counterparts.

The report’s finding has been reviewed by child protection experts from governments, the UN system and civil society at a meeting held in Bangkok, Thailand, on Wednesday 8 August.

Read also:

Over 100 Million Children Subjected to Slavery, Sexual Exploitation

Millions of Urban Children at High Risk of Violence, Exploitation and Trafficking

Yemen – Over 800,000 Children Suffer from Acute Malnutrition

Yemen: New Outbreak of the Big Killer of Children — Measles

UN to Israel ‘Stop Violating Palestinian Child Detainees Human Rights’

Child Labour Returns to Europe

Sahel: No Food for 18 Million People – Urgent Help Needed for Women, Children

Alarming Reports of Extreme Sexual Violence against Malian Women, Girls

Thousands of African Refugees Face Shocking Levels of Violence by Smugglers

Who Dares to Challenge a 32 Billion Dollars Business – Human Trafficking?

Africa’s Boat People, Victims of Abduction, Extortion, Sexual Assault and Kidnapping

Who Is Afraid of 300 Or 400 Or 500 Million Miserables?

2012 Human Wrongs Watch

2 Trackbacks to “High Prevalence of Child Abuse in East Asia-Pacific”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: