The Child Development Agency, CDA, has advised Youth Minister Lisa Hanna that six children’s homes broke the law when they allowed lobby group Jamaicans for Justice, JFJ, to implement a controversial sexual education programme.
Minister Hanna issued a statement to the media today in which she disclosed that she has received an interim report from the CDA.
The report concerns the circumstances under which JFJ was given permission to implement the sex education programme in the six privately run homes.
Among the nine preliminary findings presented to Minister Hanna by the CDA is that parts of the JFJ training material were inappropriate for the age cohort.
Children as young as 11-years-old were exposed to the material.
The agency also told Minister Hanna that before giving permission for the implementation of the programme, at no time did the administrators of the homes inform the CDA or the Minister, as required by the Child Care and Protection Act.
The act states that where educational programmes are provided at children’s homes, the licensee shall ensure that those programmes are in accordance with a curriculum approved by the Minister.
Both Minister Hanna and the CDA have said they were not made aware of the JFJ programme by the administrators of the six homes.
The Act also states that if there’s any substantial deviation from the approved curriculum, a notification should be sent by the operator of the home immediately to the Youth Minister.
According to the law, children’s homes are also required have a copy of the timetable for the programme displayed at each facility.
The CDA reported to Minister Hanna that the operators of the six homes breached those provisions.
Minister Hanna has said she’ll take appropriate action after receiving responses from the administrators of the homes.
The CDA also told the Youth Minister that the sex education programme was a departure from that approved by the Ministry of Education for use in public schools
The agency also reported to Minister Hanna that the administrators of the six homes gave approval to JFJ to implement the sex education programme.
Minister Hanna reported that the CDA advised her that it was confirmed that the six homes each received a monetary contribution from JFJ.
The CDA says its investigations reveal that JFJ paid the children’s home for use of their premises for the training.
And, according to the statement from Minister Hanna’s office, the CDA advised her that “the children received training in the areas relating to homosexuality and anal sex.”
The children are now receiving counselling.
One is reported to have said he was taught that it’s possible to get an infection in the mouth from oral sex.
Another said “I was taught that anal sex is not healthy for the body but if one wants to have anal sex it
is his right and no one should try to hurt that individual”.
Another related that they were not influenced to do anal or oral sex but it is a choice”. And another related that he learned that there are individuals who are homosexual, heterosexual and bisexual.