The Daily Herald writes that Dutch State Secretary of Health, Welfare and Sports Martin van Rijn will adopt the recommendations in the report from the Inspectorate of Youth Care to improve the youth care in the Caribbean Netherlands even further. In the coming years, he is determined to work in his field on a much better youth care and implementation of (family) guardianship in Dutch public entities Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba. An integral approach is necessary because a structural improvement of the situation of children can only be achieved when progress is also made also in areas such as poverty control, the housing situation and the attitude towards violence. Van Rijn wrote this with the presentation of the report “Quality of the youth care in Caribbean Netherlands” to the Second Chamber of Parliament in The Hague. Based on research conducted at the end of 2013, the Inspectorate concluded that three years after the transition from the Netherlands Antilles to the Caribbean Netherlands, institutions for youth care are present on all three islands.
The cultural and social-economic situation in the Caribbean Netherlands differs from that in the European part of the Netherlands, and many of the services available there are lacking on the islands. Despite this, the employees of Youth Care and Family Guardianship Caribbean Netherlands JGCN succeeded in setting up youth care service in just a few years, with a focus on practical help. However, according to the Inspectorate, further steps are necessary to improve the quality of youth care. To achieve this, recommendations are made to JGCN and the two local subsidised residential services, “Langverblijfhuis” and “Kas pa Hoben ku Futuro.”
Investigating the status of the youth care and the implementation of the (family) guardianship in the Caribbean Netherlands was useful, according to the state secretary. It will be a huge challenge to adopt the recommendations, certainly considering the size of the islands, Van Rijn stated. In some areas, changes are being made, for example, the continuity and quality of the internal operation at JGCN. Although the state secretary appreciates the efforts of the personnel, he also realises that these efforts alone are not sufficient. Improvement of youth care and (family) guardianship could lead to an actual structural improvement of the situation of children in the Caribbean Netherlands if progress is also made in other areas, such as poverty control, the housing situation and the attitude towards violence. This requires making good agreements on an integral approach during the Caribbean Netherlands Week in June 2014, Van Rijn stated.