Jamaica News; Justice Minister, Hon. Delroy Chuck, is calling out fathers who are not living up to their responsibility.
Delivering the main address at a Child Diversion Programme Sensitisation seminar for Justices of the Peace and the police, in Mandeville on August 28, the Minister said far too many fathers are being called to the family courts for maintenance.
“The poor mothers in this country are overburdened. They alone never had the child, but from the fathers get the child, you don’t see them again. Some show their face now and then, but if the child ever turns out to be a success, you hear how great they (fathers) were,” he said.
Mr. Chuck argued that if parents were living up to their responsibilities, child diversion centres and family courts would not be necessary.
The Minister called on the police officers and Justices of the Peace present to speak out about this issue, because fathers must take responsibility for their children, and assist in mentoring and parenting them, because when they don’t, the problems end up at the Ministry of Justice.
Mr. Chuck explained that Child Diversion is one of the many programmes that the Ministry of Justice is pushing across the island, as government has to address many of the island’s social problems in a similar manner to what is being done with restorative justice and mediation.
“These are programmes to ensure that the problems are dealt with, that justice is done, because there can be no peace without justice. Child Diversion is extremely important. When young people get into trouble, it is wrong to ignore them and label them as good-for-nothing and worthless,” he stressed.
The Minister said in those tender years, children need guidance as they are the candidates for the gangs and those who become recidivists in the prison system.
“And that is why the Ministry of Justice considers it important that we capture all of those youngsters who are going on the wrong path and showing deviant, delinquent behaviour, and mentor them and change their ways and urge them to move on the straight and narrow path,” he said.
The law defines Child Diversion as a child-appropriate process of determining the responsibility and treatment of a child in conflict with the law without resorting to formal adjudication by a court.
Source: JIS News