Welfare department reviewing guidelines to tighten application approvals for care centres

REMBAU: The Social Welfare Department (JKM) is reviewing several guidelines to tighten the approval of applications for the operation of care centres, said Women, Family and Community Development Minister Datuk Seri Rina Mohd Harun.

She said the matter would be presented to her soon to enable improvements to be made to the existing guidelines to prevent cases of neglect and abuse of children from recurring.

“Some of the guidelines include tightening the criteria for Qualified and Suitable People (caring for children) and several other things.

“Of course, when we want to improve the guidelines, we take into account not only (the involvement) of JKM but the current situation and (also input) from other ministries other than the relevant agencies,” she told reporters after visiting children’s home, Rumah Kanak-Kanak Rembau, here, today.

She said a total of 1,828 care centres nationwide were registered under the Care Centres Act 1993 (Act 506) as of last May, including those involving care homes for children, the elderly and People with Disabilities (PwD).

Meanwhile, Rina advised the public not to viral photographs or any recordings of abuse cases involving children as it is an offence under Section 15 of the Child Act 2001.

“At the same time, if there is a suspicion of such cases around us or there are known cases related to abuse or exploitation of children, the public should act and inform Talian Kasih or the authorities immediately,” she said.

In the meantime, she said for the record, a total of 2,461 children nationwide were rescued by JKM from physical and sexual abuse, neglect and others from January to May.

In another development, Rina said the decision to allow senior citizens aged 60 and above to walk in at any vaccination centre in the Klang Valley to receive their Covid-19 vaccination jabs was the best step to ensure herd immunity was achieved in that area.

However, she hoped that other vulnerable groups, especially PwD, would also be given permission to receive walk-in vaccinations.

Yesterday, the Coordinating Minister of the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme, Khairy Jamaluddin said senior citizens who have not yet received their Covid-19 vaccine appointment date can walk in to vaccination centres to receive their injections starting today. – Bernama