Recent news stories of mothers arrested for killing their children have pointed out the holes in Germany’s child welfare safety net. Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel called for taking a dual approach to protecting children. Parents need more support, she said. Yet there’s also a need for better monitoring to make sure children are not left in an abusive situation. Doctor’s visits for young children should become mandatory across the country, politicians decided at an emergency meeting Merkel called to discuss the topic on Wednesday, Dec. 19. Merkel, who heads the conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU), met with state and local officials responsible for child welfare under Germany’s federal system. The doctor visits are envisioned as part of an early warning system to help detect possible abuse. “The risks for children must be detected early in order to establish a help net for at-risk children,” said Family Minister Ursula von der Leyen (CDU). Seeking constitutional protection Not all children have loving parents For the moment, children’s rights won’t be specifically enshrined in the constitution, as Germany’s Social Democratic Union (SPD) had hoped. Mentioning children specifically in the constitution would ensure that both the legislature and the courts weighed child welfare carefully… Read full this story
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