Child abuse is, unfortunately, a regular occurrence. The abusers can be anyone, ranging from a felon to the person entrusted with a child’s care (e.g. a parent or teacher).
UN Convention on the Rights of the Child
All children have equal rights to protection from abuse and exploitation; everybody has a responsibility to support the care and protection of children; the duty bearers have the obligation to contribute to the eradication of child abuse.
Using this as our ethical baseline, SALT Academy has professed its commitment to a strict Child Protection Policy so as to prevent the children involved in our programs from incurring any form of abuse.
“SALT associates should not act in ways intended to shame, humiliate, belittle or degrade children or perform any form of emotional abuse.”
This is a fundamental point given that SALT Academy’s activities encourage children to step outside of their comfort zones – it could hence be easy to shatter their confidence even with a poor choice of words, an outcome which we wish to avoid at all costs.
We also use our Child Protection Policy to educate the children involved in our activities about their rights, specifically relating to the topic of abuse. As such,
“children will be taught that they have a right to do something if an adult or another young person behaves or talks to them in a way that makes them feel uncomfortable or in danger, and to trust and act on their instincts.”
In this sense, we want to create an environment in which our staff and our associates act respectfully and appropriately, but also where the children themselves can recognize unseemly situations and act on their own behalf.
These are but a few excerpts of the policy. The full document can be found here.
Statement of Commitment
In line with the spirit of our policy, we commit to:
- respect the rights and dignity of the children, families and communities with whom we work, and always in accordance with the best interest of children;
- demonstrate true commitment to actively preventing child abuse; and
- take positive action to prevent child abusers from becoming involved with SALT in any way, and taking immediate action against any SALT associate should they commit child abuse.
We thus pledge to uphold:
- The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child;
- The Cambodian Constitution; and
- The current and future Cambodian legislation on child rights.