(QCOSTARICA) In 2015, the Costa Rica 9-1-1 service registered one call every 15 minutes with regards to violence against children (maltrado infantil in Spanish), according to official data, reported by Telenoticias.
In 2015, more than 44,000 calls reporting that a child was in danger were made to 9-1-1, an increase over the previous three years. In 2014 there were 43,500 calls; in 2013, 38,900 calls and in 2012, 37,200 calls.
Former President Laura Chinchilla and Montserrat Solano, Defensora de los Habitantes (Ombudswoman), stated that, although the main responsibility in terms of the monitoring and control of children lies with the family, all citizens must protect them.
Both Chinchilla and Solano said, “we must be more proactive and supportive.”
But what are the threats against minors? According to statistics most violence registered against children involves family conflicts, followed by physical abuse, negligence in terms of health and sanitary and psychological aggression.
‘It is a difficult task, because children are naturally curious and easily attracted to toys or animals, but we have to teach them that they cannot talk or leave with unknown adults,’ Solano said, referring to the latest case of a minor lured by a neighbour who decapitated and mutilated the genitals of the eight year old boy.