Ag. Public Health Communications Specialist
Ministry of Health and Social Development
Telephone: 468-3701 ext. 852 7742
Parents and guardians are advised not to leave children unattended during activities leading up to Emancipation Celebration Festival.
Head of Family Children and Protective Services Ms. Laurel Freeman said that cases of child abuse or endangerment are always a concern and children should never be left alone at any age.
Neglect remains the most prevalent form of abuse against children in the Virgin Islands with 21 cases being reported to the Department in 2018.
She continued that latchkey children are common in our communities because of the demand or type of employment of parents.
“Children may appear to be more responsible but we want to avoid unforeseen events that can occur when children are alone,” Ms. Freeman stated.
The following are tips that parents should consider when seeking child care services whether from family or professional services:
Ms. Freeman also advised that parents shouldn’t hesitate to call the Social Development Department for more information in seeking appropriate child care services.
Parents are also reminded that in case of an emergency or to report a suspected case of child abuse to call 911, 311 or the 24-hour telephone hotline of 468-9371.
The Social Development Department remains committed to the safety and well-being of children and healthy families and this is aligned with their campaign ‘Every Child Matters’.