South Africa country report on the situation on prevention of child maltreatment study
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South African child protection services have always been predominantly delivered at the tertiary level: they have been oriented towards removing children from unsafe situations after those situations have reached the point where removal is the only option. What remains unclear is the extent to which South Africa, following policy recommendations emphasizing prevention, has shifted from these predominantly tertiary interventions and is on track to implement primary and secondary prevention programmes which focus on risk factors. This approach is vital given the assumed wider societal benefits of prevention. Such a shift is also
necessary to realize the values of the democratic and human-rights based policy and legal framework in the management of child care and protection which evolved following South Africa's democratization in 1994.