Pregnant teens cause for concern at Children’s Homes

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Pregnant teens cause for concern at Children’s Homes

The Children’s Authority of Trinidad and Tobago said it has taken note of recent concerns within the public domain about children residing at Children’s Homes who are pregnant.

The Authority in a media release issued this evening said that there are two Children’s Homes specifically designated for pregnant teens.

The Authority further said that the children were already pregnant when they were brought to the attention of the Authority for placement and the relevant Police reports were made at that time.

However while at these Homes, the girls are provided with care and intervention to prepare them for motherhood.

“Over the past eight years since the operationalisation of the Authority, there have been two instances of girls who became pregnant while they were residents of Children’s Homes.

During the Authority’s investigation, it was determined that no staff member of the Homes was responsible for the girls becoming pregnant. As is customary, the matters were reported to the Police, who are conducting their investigation.

The Authority also wishes to remind the public that the organisation does not  manage the operations of Children’s Homes. The management of the Homes is conducted by the Board of each residential facility. The Authority, however, through its Licensing and Monitoring Department, is responsible for the conduct of regular announced and unannounced monitoring visits at all Children’s Homes to ensure that they provide for the safety, security and welfare of the children in their care.

The public is reminded that “child protection is everybody’s business” and any suspicions of child abuse should be reported to the Authority’s Hotline at 996 or the Police at 999.

The Authority notes that the placement of children in institutional care is a last resort and it is working with partners in the child protection sector to strengthen family and community interventions, to limit the number of children who are received into care.”