Improved Child Protection Laws and Sentences in The Bahamas
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In the first case of the production of child pornography we're seeing in The Bahamas, Acting Justice/former Deputy Chief Magistrate Andrew Forbes seems to have set a dangerous regional precedent - ruling that, "Lewis Jr will be required to attend the Department of Social Services, specifically the Domestic Violence Unit and perform 50 hours of community service". Source: Tribune News Article
We the people say that judgement is unacceptable when the maximum sentence possible under Bahamian law is life imprisonment. The appeal should be upheld and a much more appropriate sentence given as this is not simply a slap on the wrist, but an open invitation to those that seek to prey upon children.
We will not wait for another Bahamian child/minor to be abused, misused or killed before we make noise on their behalf.
While we're at it, here are a few legislative changes we seek:
- Establishment of a Minor's Advocate office
- Expansion of the parameters of a minor's advocate to include private social workers such as crisis center counsellors instead of only people with a legal background
- Separate sexual offenses court and family courts
- Revision under advisement then full implementation of Marco's Alert
- Consultation with relevant advocacy groups around the establishment and regulations surrounding a convicted sex offender registry before full implementation
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