National Ombudsman and Ombudsman for Children investigate parenting problems as a result of poverty in the Caribbean Netherlands
News release March 4, 2021
Mother sits with child on her lap at home on Saba
The National Ombudsman and the Ombudsman for Children are jointly launching a survey among single parents and their children living in poverty on Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba. The research focuses on the problems these parents experience in raising their children. The ombudsmen have informed this in a letter to, among others, the outgoing Minister of Social Affairs and Employment.
Extra affected by poverty
Poverty in the Caribbean Netherlands is a major problem, according to two previous studies into poverty among the elderly and young adults . These groups of people, like single parents with children, seem to be particularly affected by poverty. That is why the National Ombudsman, partly together with the Ombudsman for Children, has been investigating the poverty issue in the Caribbean Netherlands since 2019.
Solutions to get out of poverty
The ombudsmen will investigate what problems Caribbean Dutch single parents and children, who live around or below the poverty line, encounter in their upbringing. Poverty has serious negative consequences for the parenting possibilities of parents, especially if they are single. It is also being investigated what consequences this has for their quality of life. And they map out what these parents and children expect from the government and social organizations.
Based on the investigation, the National Ombudsman and the Ombudsman for Children will make recommendations to ensure that single parents can properly shape the upbringing of their children. Because poverty is an important risk factor for parenting problems, some of the recommendations will also relate to reducing poverty and poverty-related problems. The report on this study is expected to be published in the autumn of 2021.
Since 2010 Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba have been special municipalities of the Netherlands. Together they form the Caribbean Netherlands. Since then, the National Ombudsman has been handling complaints about government agencies on the islands. Since 2012, he has also been handling complaints about local government agencies, or public entities. Since its establishment in 2011, the Ombudsman for Children has been allowed to handle complaints in the Caribbean Netherlands.
This joint study into poverty among single parents and their children in the Caribbean Netherlands is the third in a series of three studies by the National Ombudsman into poverty issues in the Caribbean Netherlands. In September 2019, the National Ombudsman published the first study into poverty among the elderly on Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba . In September 2020, the National Ombudsman, together with the Ombudsman for Children, published the second study into youth poverty in the Caribbean Netherlands . The three studies into poverty in the Caribbean Netherlands are part of the ombuds agenda of the National Ombudsman.