DSWD launches search for child-friendly police station in Davao City

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/04 October) — The Committee for the Welfare of Children in Southeastern Mindanao has opened the country’s first search for a child-friendly police station in the city.

Ester Versoza, regional director of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), said the search is part of the campaign to improve the city’s protection of the rights of women and children.

Anna Marie Baladad, chief of the police community division, meantime said their headquarters has ordered them to furnish their reception desks with facilities that are comparable to those of first class hotels in the city.

”We were ordered to put up reception desks, complete with water and newspapers for clients,” Baladad said.

Versoza said the child-friendly movement is a national ”crusade to put the rights of the child at the center of the country’s development efforts.”

The search for the child-friendly police station will run in the next four years until all police stations in the region will be certified as ”child-friendly.”

It will look into the existing facilities within the police stations such as a holding room for child victims of violence or those in conflict with the law, separate rooms for boys and girls, furniture and children’s toys, particularly anatomical dolls.

Among the other indicators of a child-friendly police station are the child protection programs being carried out, the attitude and competence of police officers handling cases of children, and the quality of services delivered, especially to children in need of special protection. (Germelina Lacorte/MindaNews)