Bangladesh to recruit 6,000 social workers to efficiently protect children

Bangledeshi Government

BANGLEDESHI government on Monday announced that it would recruit 6,000 new social workers, bringing the workforce from 3,000 to 9,000, to efficiently protect children in communities.

The ground-breaking commitment to children came after a comprehensive national household survey revealed that 45 million Bangladeshi children under the age of 15, and that about 89 per cent of them are regularly subjected to physical and psychological violence at home.

The announcement to strengthen child protection services and increase the number of social workers by 200 per cent was made at the first-ever “National Symposium on Child Protection in Bangladesh”, which was held Monday in capital, Dhaka.

The symposium was opened by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina virtually and was jointly organised by the UNICEF and the European Union.

In a video message, she emphasised the importance of making child protection services available at the community level.

Hasina was quoted as saying in a statement by UNICEF on Monday that “the aim of our government is to build a professional social services workforce that enhances efficient delivery of child protection services.

“ It includes child Helpline 1098, Child Protection Allowances, and community-based outreach services involving volunteers, adolescent children, and community people so that no child is left behind.’’

In Bangladesh, “over three million children are trapped in child labour of which 1.3 million are in hazardous forms of child labour.

“One in five children does not complete primary school. Nearly half of children do not have a birth registration. Over 100,000 children are in institutional care and lack family support,” the statement said.

Sheldon Yett, the UNICEF representative to Bangladesh, said “social workers reach deep into communities where children need them the most.

“I congratulate the Government of Bangladesh for this dramatic increase in the number of social workers to help more children to benefit from critical professional care.’’ (Xinhua/NAN)