More protection needed for children

2017-06-13 06:03

THERE was another report of the sexual abuse of a child in an unidentified school that you say the education department is to investigate.

No amount of public outrage will protect our children.

Perverts are driven by their pathological minds to commit these crimes, and our systems are failing vulnerable children.

We have a choice to view this as just a crime by bad people, or a crime of madness, psychopathy and such like. If you take the view that these people are just bad, you can condemn them to prison and they’ll serve time and return to society to reoffend.

But if we consider that they might be both bad and mad, then we can commit them into a treatment programme in a forensic hospital and perhaps minimise the risk of recidivism. Our courts still tend to adopt a criminal interpretation but this is perhaps because our mental-health law is massively underdeveloped. Sadly, the monitoring of paedophile networks is also not a national priority for our police. These academic arguments aside, we still need a more robust system for protecting children wherever they are. It might be useful in the future to enact a law that compels anyone working with children to undergo a police check.
Anyone with a criminal record of any sort should be barred from working with children or even vulnerable adults, such as the mentally ill. Such measures would help at least to contain the problem and enable authorities to monitor previous offenders.


WARREN OLIPHANT

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