The Child Welfare League Foundation yesterday called for amendments to child protection laws, including creating a basis for the Missing Children Data Resource Center to receive more funding and resources.
At a news conference, the foundation proposed amendments to the Protection of Children and Youth Welfare and Rights Act (兒童及少年福利與權益保障法), such as providing a legal basis for the center to handle reports of missing children, as well as follow-ups and counseling in cases of missing children.
The center has long grappled with a lack of funding and staffing because there is no legal basis for its establishment, which has made it difficult for the center to consistently promote programs, the foundation said.
Photo: Liao Chen-huei, Taipei Times
Another amendment could help prevent parental child abduction, it said.
From 2016 to October this year, 2,604 children were reported to have been taken from their homes by a parent, it said, citing data from the National Police Agency (NPA).
An article should be added to the act to require divorced couples to undergo consultation and plan for the care of their children, the foundation said.
This would alleviate some of the effects of divorce on children, such as providing for their care, protecting their best interests and helping them maintain their relationships with their parents, it said.
Last year, the Ministry of the Interior recorded 54,346 divorces, but the Ministry of Health and Welfare only subsidizes family consultation services provided by about 10 non-governmental organizations, which is “clearly not enough,” it said.
In the four years since a missing-child alert system was introduced in Taiwan, it has never been used, the foundation said, adding that the NPA should loosen the criteria for issuing alerts.
From January to October this year, 5,156 children under the age of 18 were reported missing, the foundation said, citing NPA data.
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Chiang Wan-an (蔣萬安), KMT Legislator Hung Mong-kai (洪孟楷) and New Power Party Legislator Claire Wang (王婉諭) also attended the news conference.
While in the past kidnapping by strangers was the most common cause of children disappearing, children today often “voluntarily” leave their homes, Wang said.
When children leave, their livelihoods, safety and health might be affected or threatened, she said.
Laws should also be improved to better prevent repeat runaways, she said, adding that even after children return, there is a risk they will go missing again.
Children might be unaware that people are searching for them, center representative Hsu Ching-ling (許慶玲) said.
Counseling children after they have been found and helping them adjust to living at home again are essential, she added.
‘LOW PROBABILITY’: China still ‘has a ways to go to develop the actual, no-kidding capability’ to seize Taiwan militarily, US General Mark Milley said The US’ top general on Thursday downplayed concern that China would attempt a military takeover of Taiwan in the near term, saying Beijing does not have the capability to do so. While there has been rising concern in Taiwan and among US lawmakers about Chinese military activity near Taiwan, such as flying jets in Taiwan’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ), US military officials said that such moves are not overly concerning. US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley told lawmakers that while Taiwan was still a core national interest of China, “there’s little intent right now, or motivation,
A Kaohsiung woman who thought that she was dating Hollywood actor Keanu Reeves was found not guilty of abetting fraud, the Kaohsiung District Court has ruled. Citing insufficient evidence to prove intent, the court on May 27 dismissed fraud and money-laundering charges against the woman, surnamed Chang (張), saying that the evidence suggested that she had been duped. The verdict can be appealed. The verdict said that police opened an investigation into Chang after her bank account was linked to an online catfishing scheme, which involves luring someone into a relationship by using a fictional online persona. The scheme claimed two victims, including a
The Canadian House of Commons on Thursday unanimously passed the first reading of a proposal to create a legal framework for efforts to strengthen relations with Taiwan. The Canada-Taiwan Relations Framework Act was introduced by Canadian Member of Parliament Michael Cooper, who said that not having a formal diplomatic relationship with Taiwan has complicated interactions between the two nations. Taiwan is one of Canada’s largest trading partners, and the two share strong people-to-people links and common values, he said. Taiwan “is a vibrant economy and one of the world’s top 20 economies. It is time Canada’s relations with Taiwan reflect
Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) lawmakers yesterday condemned Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) Institute of Revolutionary Practice director Lo Chih-chiang (羅智強) for calling the government a “vaccine beggar” for receiving a donation of COVID-19 vaccines from the US. “Lo is still living in feudal China,” DPP Legislator Kuan Bi-ling (管碧玲) told a news conference. “When Taiwan needs unity, he uses malicious words to malign our president’s character and Taiwan’s national integrity. This person is either evil or he is completely ignorant,” she said. Taiwan donated 2 million masks to the US, and provided 2 million masks and 50,000 protective gowns to Japan when they