Group calls for murders of young girls to be catalyst for change

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Weeks after the discovery of the remains of Shanoya Wray, the 13-year-old girl whose skeletal remains were found at a house in Mona, the burnt body of Yetanya Francis was found in the 12th Street section of Arnett Gardens on Friday, August 24. The police said they suspect Francis was attacked, raped and then her body was set ablaze and dumped at the spot where it was found.

Blaine is imploring Jamaicans to "use these two murders as a catalyst for change".

She said Jamaicans should use the double tragedy of the teenagers being viciously killed, to work for positive changes in the area of child safety in Jamaica.

In relation to Wray, Blaine is appealing for help for her family, including her six siblings.

She argued that, "these murdered youngsters may have been residents of poor, underserved communities, but they were valued humans, part of the fabric of all of our lives. They were people with rights, with lives they had hoped to live, with bright futures now denied them."

Blaine lamented that, "hundreds more of our bright, young Jamaicans continue to face the same risks that killed Shenoya and Yetanya."

She pleaded that, "We must all pull together to protect our children".

She said Hear The Children's Cry is urging Jamaicans to, among other things, lobby their Members of Parliament (MP) to make public declarations on workable solutions to protect children; engage churches to implement child protection policies and help train community members to use them; and establish community groups that will enforce 8:00 p.m. curfews for children.

"We also want to invite concerned citizens to offer practical assistance to Shanoya's family, including her siblings, four brothers ages 3, 5, 6 and 17, and two sisters, 15 and 20 years' old," Blaine added.

Persons wishing to help may contact Hear The Children's Cry at 26 Haining Road, Kingston 5. Telephone numbers are 876-929-0431, 876-294-8123-5, or 876-822-0483; email: hearthechildrenscry@yahoo.com.

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