An ACPF Initiative
ACPF established the Children’s Legal Protection Centre (CLPC)in 2005 as part of its Children and the Law Programme with an overall objective of ensuring justice to all children.
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ACPF re-established the CLPC in 2012, in collaboration with the Federal Supreme Court of Ethiopia with the aim of strengthening Government’s effort to enhance child justice administration and to create a sustainable child protection structure in the justice system.
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What do they say : Practitioners
Children’s Legal Protection Centres are an important means for narrowing the gap between law and practice, extending legal protection to children and ensuring that they have access to justice.
Dr Assefa Bequele, Executive Director (2003-2010), Distinguished Fellow, ACPF
CLPCs are a powerful and effective tool for building and sustaining a protective environment for children. Their advocacy is powerful because it has conviction and experience behind it.
Helen Seifu, CLPC Director, 2005 – 2010, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Internationally, children’s rights are so divided in terms of sectoral interventions. Everyone is a specialist – legal, educational, psychological, and somewhere we felt the child gets lost in the middle of all these specialisations.
Enakshi Ganguly Thukral, HAQ Centre for Child Rights, Delhi, India
“Children involved in the justice system are mostly victims of various psychosocial problems. The provision of a legal aid service alone cannot solve their multifaceted problems. These children in the justice system also need educational support, medical support, shelter, counselling, nutritional support, reunification with family, etc. These services are mostly required temporarily until the legal issue that affected their rights and interests are solved
Zahara Legesse Kaufman, MSW, Consultant, Child, Adolescent, Adult, Couple and Family Therapy Assessments, Trainings, Retreats and Supervision
What do they say: The Judiciary
The CLPC has registered commendable achievement in establishing a child protection system within the justice system that responds to the various needs of children. This pilot project has proved to benefit the children in many folds and is now replicated in regions namely, Amhara, Oromiya and Southern Nations Nationalities and Peoples Region.
Ato Medhin Kiros, Vice President, Federal Supreme Court, (2010-2016)
Child rights organisations cannot replace the state, but rather, they encourage and assist the state in discharging its obligations towards fulfilling the standards set by international and domestic legal instruments. The CLPC is an excellent example in supporting the government in its efforts to realise child rights in Ethiopia.
Dr. Menberetsehai Taddesse, Vice President, Federal Supreme Court Federal Democratic Republic Government of Ethiopia (1996-2010)
The work of the CLPC is intellectually and emotionally challenging and so staff run the risk of burning out following a certain amount of time, because of long hours of work and being exposed to the raw realities of the children’s lives. The CLPC has been fortunate to have a highly committed team which is the basis of the center’s commendable achievements. It is important that all efforts are geared towards the sustainability of the staff.
Wzo Selamawit Girmay, Coordinator, Child Justice Project Office (2009-2016) Judge, Federal High Court (2016 to present)
The Children’s Legal Protection Centre plays a critical role in supporting the judiciary to ensure the best possible outcomes for children – through various integrated programmes such as family mediation, legal counseling, court representations, determination of paternity through DNA testing and provision of psychosocial services.
Ato Leouleselassie Liben, Judge, Federal First Instance Court Focal Person – Child Justice Project Office