Press release

800 minors at risk of sexual abuse in Lazio. The first “child-saving” course of the Rome network gets started

The “Stop abuse on children” project continues in Rome, launched by Menarini in collaboration with the Italian Society of Paediatrics (SIP) and the Italian Federation of Paediatricians (FIMP), for the creation of a national network against child abuse. The goal of the project is to train and raise awareness amongst Italian paediatricians to recognise the signals of possible abuse and how to intervene.

800 minors at risk of sexual abuse in Lazio.
The first child-saving course of the Rome network gets started 

Roma, Friday 26 May 2017 – Rome is the second stop of the medical training course for the network of paediatricians against child abuse. About 50 paediatricians in Lazio will receive in-depth training on the clinical and legal tools to recognise the signs of abuse on children and to take action. About 800 children under 14 in the Lazio region are at risk of sexual abuse, and almost 8,500 will likely suffer from neglect, ill-treatment and psychological and physical violence.

Too often, suffering is veiled in silence, and for this reason Menarini has focused on the creation of a national anti-abuse network with training events for doctors carried out in collaboration with the Italian Society of Paediatrics (SIP) and the Italian Federation of Paediatricians (FIMP). The multinational Florentine pharmaceuticals company supports the project with an investment of € 1 million.

“In Lazio there are no available data on abuse and ill-treatment rates because we have no monitoring centre for minors, but the prevalence of the phenomenon is no different from the rest of the country. The data from scientific literature is confirmed: one in one thousand children are at risk of abuse, which remains a conservative estimate mostly because in two out of three instances, acts of abuse are carried out by a family member” – comments Pietro Ferrara, Chairperson of SIP Lazio“Today, the question of abuse and ill-treatment can no longer be ignored, also because of the serious consequences on the child's health in the short and long term: an ill-treated and/or abused child, in fact, is at risk not only of physical, psychological and behavioural disorders, but also physical damage in adult life. This is why FIMP and SIP consider it a question of professional pride to follow this path towards knowledge capable of involving all the members of national paediatrics in a spirit of collaboration, which is the cornerstone of an effective network.”

“The ‘Stop abuse on children’ project continues in Rome, combining professional know-how, awareness and enthusiasm that all the paediatricians have shown for one of the most difficult and painful problems of childhood and adolescence”Luigi Nigri, FIMP project manager, stated – “In Rome about 50 paediatricians will be involved and many others will take part in the courses that will be held in 17 other Italian cities throughout 2017. The initiative will help to raise awareness: the paediatricians who follow the courses will become a reference point for their colleagues throughout the country, who will receive advice and help in managing cases of suspected abuse and ill-treatment. All this will help to bring to light an increasing number of victims and, we hope, to increase the number of cases being reported”.

Our mission to create a network of paediatricians and general practitioners to safeguard victims of child abuse and ill-treatment continues in Lazio. Menarini has developed this project in order to create a branched network for medical training in all the regions of Italy, because unfortunately these sad stories we see in the news regard the whole of Italy” – commented Alberto Giovanni and Lucia Aleotti, Vice Chairperson and Chairperson of the Menarini Group – “In this respect, the project is unique and makes Italy an example for all the other countries. We strongly believe in the social value of this network of medical "look-outs". Raising the awareness of doctors around these issues will help to safeguard children's peace of mind, well-being and vitality and, we hope, to also drastically reduce the number of painful stories that nobody wants to read in the newspapers”.