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Of Thoughts and Reflection: United Nations Rules for Protection of Juveniles Deprived of Their Liberty Vis-À-Vis Operation Second Chanceabd5

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Of Thoughts and Reflection: United Nations Rules for Protection of Juveniles Deprived of their Liberty vis-à-vis Operation Second Chance

There are many factors why children have become transgressors of law. As there are many factors encourage children to commit crimes, there are as well many serious effects in the family and in the society at large. This is what I learned when Room 301 of the University of San Carlos-College of Law took journey all the way to Operation Second Chance, Barangay Kalunasan, Cebu City last September 26, 2010.

Operation Second Chance is a facility intended for the minors in conflict with the law. It is a joint project of the Cebu City Task Force on Street Children and the Cebu City Government. The center started its operation on August 2006. Its aim is to provide a genuine rehabilitation facility in response to the rising number of Children In-Conflict with the Law (CICL) in the local community.

Restorative Justice is the driving impetus of the center. While meeting the end goals of Republic Act 9344 or otherwise known as Juvenile Justice and Welfare Act of 2006, it helps CICL restore their reputation through rehabilitation, diversion and intervention with the support of rehabilitation center workers and the government in general.

At present there are about 171 CICL and only two social workers and ten staffs or "house parents" who manned the center. There are concerns brought to the government and private sectors which need immediate action on which the survival of the center is inevitably at stake!

Having in mind the United Nation Rules for the Protection of Juveniles Deprived of their Liberty, I would like to relate this with the status of the Operation Second Chance with all honesty.

Explicit in the principles and procedures decreed in the Rules is to ensure respect for human rights of juveniles. According to its standard, juveniles detained in facilities should be guaranteed the benefit of meaningful activities and programs which serve to promote and sustain their health and self-respect, to foster their sense of responsibility and to encourage those attitudes and skills that will assist them in developing their potential as members of society.

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