Social activist Shannon Massar has urged Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad Sangma to implement the Personal Safety Education Programme in all government schools in the State.
Launching a signature campaign on Change.org, Massar who is the co-founder of Faith Foundation said that child sexual abuse is on the rise in the State.
“The State witnessed a large number of crimes against children in the year 2018 with 238 cases registered under the Protection of Children against Sexual Offences Act 2012 and IPC sections 376, 354 and 509.These are just numbers of reported cases while there are many that go unreported,” she said.
Stating that children are suffering silently, Massar said it is the duty of every person and authority in Meghalaya to ensure this suffering does not continue.
“We need to prevent it from happening. The child spends most of their waking hours in schools. Schools seem like the best place to start conversations. I would like to appeal to the Chief Minister of Meghalaya to take action immediately,” Massar added.
She also said that sexual abuse in childhood can leave scars that can last a very long time.
“Disbelief, denial and cover-up to preserve family reputation has made child sexual abuse an invisible crime. It is time we start talking and addressing this issue,” Massar said.
The activist also appealed to people to join hands to change the current situation to protect children who are the future generations.
So far, around 25,000 people have signed the petition online.