29 years after the General Assembly of the United Nations (UN) adopted and put into force the Convention on the Rights of the Child, of which Cuba is a signatory state, the Caribbean island is recognized as a model nation in compliance with this legal instrument and for exhibiting favorable indicators in terms of legal protection for children and adolescents.
Highlights the fact that the Cuban revolutionary government did not wait for the adoption of any treaty or international summit to consecrate its will to protect and guarantee the rights of children.
Since the 60s of the last century, measures, programs and legislation ensured that children and adolescents are entitled to the same rights enjoyed by all people, plus specific rights derived from their status as persons who are growing.
In spite of the limitations that the largest Antillean island has faced from the economic and financial point of view, its Government and its institutions have always demonstrated the explicit commitment to maintain the achievements in the protection of children and adolescents, guaranteed by the implementation of an integrated legal system and that its multiple rights are endorsed in a legal body of obligatory compliance for all.
This is explained in an interview with Radio 26 by Alina Domínguez García, chief prosecutor of the Department of Family Protection and Jurisdictional Affairs in the Matanzas Provincial Prosecutor’s Office.
“The Office of the Prosecutor is part of the Provincial Coordinating Group headed by the Ministry of Justice known as Project for a World of Law, which is responsible for disseminating children’s rights through multiple activities in coordination with Education and its network of schools and libraries, UJC, the Federation of Cuban Women and other organizations. Taking into account our role, the Office of the Prosecutor undertakes the generalization of rights related to the protection of minors, that is, which are the main Cuban laws that protect children from all points of view and we ensure that it is carried out in the country what is endorsed in the Convention. ”
What Cuban legislation addresses the legal protection of children?”In the first place, we have the Constitution of the Republic of Cuba, which generally regulates the protection of citizens, and in particular of children, also the Family Code. Just to mention some examples, the Right to Equality that proclaims the international norm is materialized in that Cuban children have to be recognized by their parents without taking into account the form of union of their parents. Previously the legislation spoke of legitimate or natural children, that was modified and now in no document related to the birth is recorded if their parents are united by legal marriage or not.
“The right to survival is specified in our structured health system with a vaccination scheme from an early age and the law even establishes criminal figures for when the health care of an infant is affected, even if they are their own parents. Our pioneers carry out multiple activities, assemblies, congresses and there the Right to participation is expressed, to express opinions and be heard; this guarantee also takes the form of a litigation process for adoption before the Court, where a child over seven years of age can express his will and preference. In short, our laws protect the rights of consigned children, as well as their physical integrity. ”
He also pointed out how the new draft of the Constitution of the Republic of Cuba would soon be approved, in Title IV Duties, Rights and Guarantee ratifies the full protection of children and adolescents and even increases the articles destined for the Family, bearing in mind that It is the fundamental cell of society, where the child is born, takes its first steps and begins to incorporate manners and values for its future citizenship training.
According to the expert jurist, beyond what the Cuban State does to guarantee that the children enjoy a happy childhood, there are still some family spaces in the country where several of their rights are violated, from negative phenomena that have proliferated in our society.
The specialist in family and jurisdictional matters attended by the Provincial Prosecutor’s Office regretted the presence of minors in some episodes of inner-family violence, the incitement to participate in criminal acts and even the prosecution of children victims of sexual aggression.
“These isolated cases are well identified and we work with the factors of the community. The prevention issue is a priority for us, especially in the face of negative behavioral manifestations, dysfunctional families, alcoholism, procuring or corruption of minors and in criminal matters our laws are rigorous in any situation that affects the full development of childhood and adolescence.
“We cannot be satisfied with the achievements and results of Cuba in terms of child protection, we must make an analysis of how much remains to materialize and how much we have to contribute to raise the legal culture, taking into account that being the boys and girls the main Recipients of the Convention, the institutions are in the duty to extend much more their knowledge in society “-at last noted Domínguez García.
..Photos of the Author.