The essays in Volume 2 provide insights on the serious problems of child abuse and child sex trafficking in Hong Kong and internationally and focus on the need for effective child advocacy and protection. The first group of essays discuss the incidence and prevention of child abuse and child sex trafficking and highlight the urgent need for more empirical research and quantitative data to gauge the real extent of child abuse and to help calculate the huge financial costs of child maltreatment to society. The need for a coordinated multi-disciplinary community based approach to preventing and treating child victims of abuse and sex trafficking is discussed. The consequences of emotional abuse of children in high conflict separation and parental alienation cases are also considered. The essays in the second section focus on parental responsibilities, empowering children and effective child advocacy. The inappropriateness of a “rights based” discourse for matters of parents and children is analyzed, stressing the new paradigm for parent child relationships reframed as “parental responsibilities”. Allowing children to express themselves and to directly participate in proceedings involving them is discussed. Volume 2 concludes by focusing on the need for effective child advocacy and policy formulation through the appointment of independent Children’s Commissioner in Hong Kong.
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