A 14-year-old girl has been expelled for "tarnishing her school's image".
After spending a week imprisoned and raped by a trafficking syndicate, an Indonesian 14-year-old girl has been expelled from her school.
Not only was the poor girl expelled but it was done publicly during a ceremony that her school attended. The reason? Apparently the young rape survivor had "tarnished the private school's image".
TimesLive reported that the teenage girl was contacted through Facebook by a member of a trafficking syndicate. This should be a case of teaching teens about internet safety, not whether or not she hurt the good reputation of the private school.
What about human rights?
Arist Merdeka Sirait, chairman of the National Commission for Child Protection, said that "the school failed to ensure the child's right for access to education". This is just one of many problems with this situation.
Does being raped make a child no longer human? Will we take away their right to food and water next? At a time when young people are already feeling confused about their changing bodies, the added trauma of rape and then humiliation by those who should be supporting them is nothing less than a tragedy.
A sad reality about children being raped is that often, they feel that they are the guilty party. Or if they don't already feel that way, they are told as much. This story from 2003 describes how an 11-year-old girl was convinced that she was a "sinner" after being raped by her aunt's boyfriend.
Then there's the case of Edson Ndou who raped his 15-year-old daughter and was sentenced to life in prison. It has now been ruled by the Supreme Court of Appeal that he did not deserve a life sentence as his stepdaughter had "probably allowed the sex in anticipation of gifts". It's outrageous!
How are young people, or any person for that matter, supposed to know where the line between consensual sex and rape is if we keep shifting it?
Communities need to stop putting the blame of rape onto innocent children and instead find ways of supporting them and helping them cope. Rape is a trauma that most never recover from but with the love and help of those who care, perhaps we could lessen the long term effects.
How do you think rape survivors should be treated? Vote and comment below.
By: Robyn Addinall