This article appeared in January of this year, right before the visit of the Pope to the Philippines. We are not suggesting that the Pope knew anything about this or would approve. Rather, it was an attempt to keep the streets clear of begging children.
'These kids are totally without protection. They have no legal representation. They are just put in jail and left to fend for themselves.'
Pope Francis famously washed the feet of inmates in a youth detention centre in Rome in 2013 but Father Shay, who has run a mission to help children in the Philippines for 40 years, said: 'Sadly, there is no way the Pope will be visiting these detention centres in Manila.
'They are a shame on the nation. Officials here would be horrified at the prospect of the Pope seeing children treated in this way.' ...
A survey by Bahay Tuluyan found the so-called 'rescue' operations to round up street children are indiscriminate, targeting youngsters who have committed no offences and do not want to go to detention centres.
Children are taken in simply for sleeping on the street, for begging, or for stealing food to relieve their hunger, with no proper judicial process, and are exposed to abuse and exploitation by older children and adults, the study found.
POVERTY DOESN'T MAKE FOR GOOD HEADLINES