Home rapped over ‘caged’ dis­abled kids

The Sun (Malaysia) - - NEWS WITHOUT BORDERS -

KUALA LUMPUR: Cag­ing res­i­dents in wel­fare homes is not a stan­dard op­er­at­ing pro­ce­dure (SOP), said Women, Fam­ily and Com­mu­nity De­vel­op­ment Min­is­ter Datuk Seri Ro­hani Ab­dul Karim.

She was com­ment­ing on a chil­dren’s wel­fare home in Batu Ga­jah, and said chil­dren should not be put in en­clo­sures un­der any cir­cum­stances.

“We are very se­ri­ous about this. Although they are dis­abled, men­tally un­sta­ble or vi­o­lent, this is not our SOP. This is a pri­vate care cen­tre but it must fol­low the min­istry’s SOP.

“There must be coun­selling and spe­cial treat­ment, you can­not cage them up,” she said at the Par­lia­ment lobby.

Ro­hani said if a wel­fare home or cen­tre is un­able to han­dle the chil­dren, it should seek as­sis­tance from the near­est Com­mu­nity Re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion Cen­tre.

“We have child psy­chol­o­gists, and if there are vi­o­lent, men­tally chal­lenged or crit­i­cal cases, the re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion cen­tres can groom them. I un­der­stand they can be vi­o­lent. But there is no rea­son to cage them. We (should) give them more spe­cial care,” she said.

Her deputy, Datin Paduka Chew Mei Fun, who vis­ited the home, said they have asked psy­chi­a­trists and doc­tors to ex­am­ine the chil­dren.

Perak health com­mit­tee chair­man Datuk Dr Mah Hang Soon, who was present, said he would be bring­ing in the ex­perts. – by Karen Arukesamy and P. Chan­dra Sa­garan

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