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The Director, Lagos State Public Advice Centre (PAC), Mr. Tunji Dawodu, has charged parents to take a lead role in the fight against domestic violence, sexual abuse and other forms of child molestation in the State.

Dawodu, who gave the charge during his recent appearance on “Lagos Today”, an interview programme aired by Lagos Television, reminded parents of the need to live up to their responsibility by discouraging tendencies that could trigger any form of domestic assault or abuse at home.

Discussing the significant roles of parents, especially mothers, in curbing social vices, the Director explained that it has been proven over time that violent reactions not nipped in the bud at home escalate to become major societal challenges, as the household is the first major school of every child.

Dawodu stressed the need for citizens to be enlightened on gender equality, saying “The concept of encouraging the girl child to talk when harassed or abused without being judged helps to overcome future trauma or stigmatisation. Every member of society should understand the implications of subjecting victims of abuse to condemnation”.

The Director pointed out that Lagos State has a supporting structure to reduce the impact of abuse on victims, urging residents to take advantage of the services of the Public Advice Centre to enjoy confidentiality.

“As the first point of call for public service, confidentiality is key to us at the Centre. We encourage victims to speak up without revealing their identities. Our role at the Public Advice Centre is to give free legal advice and referral to the appropriate government agency”, he stated.

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