Family Protection Policy enhances family, community stability initiatives: Hessa Essa Buhumaid

DUBAI, Hessa bint Essa Buhumaid, Minister of Community Development, revealed the launch of several initiatives within the pillars of the family protection policy, most notably, the establishment of a unified database to link all entities that are related to family protection all over the UAE, adopting a unified system for reporting and receiving complaints.

These include family protection in all university specialities in humanities and psychological sciences, conducting survey studies on family protection and applying preliminary protection standards and issuing a family protection law and strategy.

This was announced during a media briefing by Buhumaid, which was attended by senior management from the Ministry and representatives of the entities involved in the preparation of the policy from the Ministry of Community Development, Ministry of Interior, General Women’s Union, Department of Community Development in Abu Dhabi, Community Development Authority in Dubai, Social Services Department in Sharjah, Dubai Foundation for Women and Children and media persons.

She emphasised on the decision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, to declare the new policy last week, as part of strengthening social ties within the UAE families and affirming the meaning of unity and cohesion between all family members and the community.

Buhumaid said, “We in the UAE do not tolerate any kind of violence towards children, elderly people or women. We also promise to support the nation, family and community members to enhance societal responsibility and boost family solidarity and cohesion, based on the positive reality of families in the UAE, as well as laws, policies and initiatives stipulated in this regard. There are 16 federal laws entitled for family members and all categories of the community, six executive bylaws and ministerial decisions, seven agreements and international conventions ratified by the UAE, and nine policies: National Youth Agenda and Strategy 2015, National Strategy for Empowerment of Emirati Women 2015-2021, National Policy for Empowering People of Determination 2017, National Strategy for Motherhood and Childhood, Plan to enhance People of Determination Rights 2017-2021, Family Stability Support Strategy in Abu Dhabi 2018-2025, UAE National Family Policy 2018, National Policy for Senior Emiratis 2018, Plan to Combat Violence Against Women in Dubai 2018, and this new policy, “Family Protection Policy”.”

She said, “The Family Protection Policy” is an important initiative since it targets the family and societal stability and coherence, regulates the procedures and mechanisms of entities that are directly dealing with family protection, promotes the UAE’s directives to integrate roles between entities and partnership between all sectors to serve the community and unify the concepts of fighting violence and all its forms.”

She elaborated that the policy focuses on family protection to maintain the safety of families since their protection is a priority of the UAE government.

The Family Protection Policy defined various forms of violence: physical violence, verbal violence, psychological or moral violence, sexual violence, economic violence and neglect. All parties involved in stipulating the policy agreed to define family protection as “any abuse, violence or threat committed by a family member against any other family member or individual exceeding his guardianship, jurisdiction, authority or responsibility resulting in physical or psychological harm”.

The policy stipulated mechanisms for protection and intervention represented in approving a reporting and complaint system by establishing a unified reporting and complaints process, damage assessment and rapid response to different cases all over the UAE.

The Family Protection Policy included several joint initiatives to be implemented in the upcoming three years in cooperation with relevant authorities. These initiatives are part of supporting laws and legislations that include the promulgation of the main legislation (family protection law), a federal legislation regulating family protection cases, relationships between family members between 2020 and 2021, promulgation of a sub-main legislation (executive by-law) to include a proper mechanism and application of the law during these years and preparation of the family protection strategy to include indicators targeting family bonding in the UAE community in 2021.

The Family Protection Policy also focuses on qualitative training for staff to raise their career competencies through specialised training and providing employees with professional licences.

In the field of research, studies and statistics, the Family Protection Policy included a survey study about family protection in the Emirati community to clarify information about a specific topic and all factors associated with it, including university specialisations, especially those related to the humanitarian, social and psychological fields, establishing a database known as “family monitoring”, a federal database linking the Ministry of Community Development and those entities related to family protection all over the UAE.

Speaking about the details of the Family Protection Policy, Buhumaid added that the UAE and its wise leadership are very keen to put UAE nationals on their priority agenda and provide them with the utmost care, protection, development and empowerment, as well as happiness for all members of the community with the commitment to customs and traditions deep-rooted in the Emirati community.

“Our reality today is not a cause of concern or makes us pessimistic; family is the most important social factor in the Emirati community and a main interest and concern at the individual and institutional levels,” she said in conclusion.

Source: Emirates News Agency

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