CHILDREN SAID

I have the right to live and play, and it must be heard by everyone.

Jelena, 9 years old

I have the right and obligation to go to school

Marko, 10 years old

Happy is the Child with the family who love, advice and support them.

Marina, 15 year old

I have the right to be protected and no one can abuse me.

Milan, 6 years old

True family should, from the our earliest period, teach us how to love and respect.

Jovana, 16 year old

The violence against children presents a serious issue in the society and is one of the most frequent forms of violation of the basic rights and interest of children. The core right of every child, right to life and development, has not only been violated by different forms of violence but the child victims suffer long term consequences of it.  .

Any form of violence against children offends and humiliates the victim, any violence hurts and as professionals point out, it influences development of the child. The consequences could be difficult and have lasting effect on physical and emotional development. The psychological violence does not leave visible marks as the physical violence, it is more difficult to identify and report it, but the effects are very harmful for the victim. The lack of self esteem, the feeling of worthlessness, insecurity, withdrawal or aggressive behavior, inadequate behavior which leads to violence, transfer of the model of violent behavior are just some of the consequences. For the lack of care givers attention, children often find their way out in aggressive ad destructive behavior, addictions, skipping the school and leaving the home.   

The violence against children appears in different forms - neglect, physical abuse, psychological abuse, sexual exploitation, violence on internet. The basic problem is that it often gets unidentified as the violence and there are no adequate responses of the responsible institutions in support and assistance to the victims and establishing the responsibility of the perpetrator.

According to the Annual Report of the Ombudsman for Children for 2015, there were 637 children exposed to different forms of violence in 2015. These are the cases that have been reported to the Ombudsman fro Children. The majority of victims were 10 - 14 years old (40,3% or 257 of them). The particularly worrying data is that 79 children up to 4 years old were reported as the victims of violence, which is increasing comparing to previous years. The boys are victims in 56,7% of case and girls are 43,3%. The children a re mainly victims of psychological and emotional abuse (56.1% or 378 of them), 188 children were victims of physical violence (27,95), sexual exploitation and abuse was reported in 27 cases or 4%.

The data reflects that in most cases the violence happens in the family. Although the family has the prime role in development of the child, unfortunately, many children suffer inside their families form the early age. The have been exposed to different forms of violence, abuse, harms, and humiliation. The family violence is not exclusively the issue of the family but is the serious problem of the entire society. Unfortunately, children are exposed to different forms of direct and indirect violence in the education and in their surroundings in general - playgrounds, sports clubs, etc.

The violence is never justified and it has to be prevented. The state is in charge to provide the safe environment in which the basic right- respect of the human dignity of every child and prevention of all forms of violence and abuse will be respected. The respect of this right is the key for fulfillment and improvement of all other rights of the child.