The problem with the US government’s care for children

Noelle Min is currently a first year at UCLA. She is currently majoring in Pre-Human Biology and Society (BS).


This past Easter Sunday, my church raised over $200,000  which was donated to create duffel bags with basic necessities and comfort items to make the relocation to a new home easier for foster children and to send them to summer camp. According to the statistics presented by Invisibles LA, the organization that Pacific Crossroads Church has partnered with, there are 34,857 and counting children in Los Angeles foster care; however, there has been a 52% decline in foster homes from 2005 to 2015.

Before this project, I never knew how significant this problem was in my own city. Often, local issues are not emphasized often or long enough by the media, unlike national and global issues. However, it is crucial to give these neglected local issues more attention because often these amass to create larger headliner issues.

This project also reminded me of how greatly children are still neglected, despite being the center of attention for most social justice crises and campaigns. When there is a natural disaster or tragic event, children always receive the highest priority for rescue and protection and appear as the subjects of the most effective media content. However, for ongoing problems, such as abandoned orphans and child laborers, they no longer receive highest priority for resources from institutions and receive less consistent media attention.

UNICEF created the Convention on the Rights of the Child to ensure that children are viewed and treated as human beings with explicit social, civil, political, economic, health, and cultural rights, not as passive objects of care and charity (unicef.org/crc/). 195 countries have ratified this treaty from its adoption in 1989; however, the United States has yet to even put this to a vote because some Republican senators believe that it threatens America’s sovereignty. Therefore, in America, we must rely on charities, which is limited and sometimes corrupted, to help children because enactment by the government is not guaranteed.

Dear Opposing Senators,

Where are your solutions?

Best,

Noelle Min

 

For further information on the treaty and organization mentioned in this blog, please check out these links:

Treaty overview and progress https://www.unicef.org/crc/

The treaty itself http://www.ohchr.org/EN/ProfessionalInterest/Pages/CRC.aspx

Invisibles LA http://invisibles.la/

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