n Child Abuse Research in South Africa - South African Police Service : Child Protection Unit

Volume 1, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1562-1383



The need for a Child Protection Unit in the South African Police Service was identified in 1986. The objectives of the Unit are to provide expert investigation especially in cases where children are involved, which is in line with the fact that children's rights are presently enshrined in the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa and that South Africa has ratified the United Nation's Convention on Children's Rights, Children differ substantially from adults as clients and therefore CPU members undergo a specialised training course to equip them for the task. They are drawn from police who have already received their basic training and have had some practical experience. The crimes they deal with encompass a large variety of crimes under common law as well as statutory offences and they act both proactively and reactively. A relatively new step forward was the establishment of the Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Investigation Branch (PCS) in 1995 in order to offer more of a one-stop service.

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