UN institution turns to Beterem for advice

The High Commissioner for Human Rights has published a chapter taken out of Beterem's book.

May 5, 2013 21:38
1 minute read.
Child receiving a shot

Child receives shot 370. (photo credit: reuters)


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The United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights included in its annual report a chapter on dangers facing children written by Beterem, Israel’s National Center for Child Safety and Health, it said on Sunday.

Beterem was asked to write a chapter on harm posed to children around the world, while other chapters related to fertility, poor nutrition, obesity, mental health, violence and drug abuse.

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The OHCHR was established by the UN general assembly in 1993 following the convening of the World Conference on Human Rights. It works to promote and protect the human rights that are guaranteed under international law and stipulated in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948.

Beterem wrote that every year, 6.9 million children die before they reach their fifth birthday. More than twothirds of the deaths result from disease and from harm that can be prevented and treated. The danger to children is more pronounced in low economic neighborhoods with poor education systems, it said.

The Beterem chapter was sent via UNICEF Israel to the UN’s Committee for Children’s Rights. It said that falls, burns, drowning, choking and road accidents among children aged five to nine are liable to cause serious physical disability. Accidents are the leading cause of death in young people aged 10 to 24.

More legislation and enforcement are needed around the world to reduce accidents, along with education to increased awareness, community empowerment, treatment and rehabilitation services, said Beterem. It also noted the danger of “games” in which children go as far as they can to faint or to be choked, and may face fatal consequences.

The UN’s Committee on Children’s Rights, which published its recommendations in March, included a specific recommendation by Beterem on how to prevent children’s accidents.

In Israel alone, about 500 children per day are taken to hospital emergency rooms to be treated for accidents in or near the home or on the road. Nearly 150 of the cases are fatal.

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