OPINION: Why are we failing our children?
AUSTRALIA should be a world leader in protecting the rights of children.
We have the wealth, the resources and the motivated professionals to ensure that every child, within reason, gets a chance at a normal life.
Well, according to Commissioner for Children, Megan Mitchell, Australia is clearly failing some of its children.
Ms Mitchell is the author of The Children's Rights Report 2019 - In Their Own Right.
It shows child neglect and abuse have jumped by almost a third in Australia and that indigenous children, children from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, children with a disability and LGBTI children are particularly vulnerable.
"I'm very concerned about the level of abuse and violence that children are exposed to in this country," she said.
"(We) really need to put all our efforts in to turn that trend around, in particular."
She said it was hard to pinpoint why figures were rising - it may be that more neglect is now being reported - but the focus should be on eradicating the problem altogether.
If that is going to happen, then the authorities need to go hard on protecting children in their first five years to ensure they get the best chance to develop without the damage of abuse and/or neglect.
It's in this first 2000-day time frame that the greatest damage to these innocent lives - that came into the world so full of promise - is done.
The trainwreck teens who are stealing cars and robbing people today were doomed by the failure of government to protect them from their hopeless, drug addicted/alcoholic parents and guardians.