Western Cape Social Development MEC, Sharna Fernandez, says the protection of children should not limited to commemorative campaigns.

Her call comes as National Child Protection Week kicks off.

The Red Cross Children’s Hospital says there have been a steady number of abuse and neglect cases during the lockdown period.

During January and May 2020 , the hospital has seen 226 cases. Of that that number, 124 cases were registered between March and May.

The department says various child protection services are available during the lockdown.

Fernandez is appealing to the public to protect children, especially now as the sale of alcohol has resumed.

“With the easing of the Covid19 restrictions from alert level 4 to alert level 3, and the ban on the sale of alcohol soon being lifted, I wish to urge all of our residents to be extra vigilant of every child’s safety. The protection and welfare of children is a collective responsibility, even when the child is not your own.