GHS 1013 HEALTH, SAFETY AND NUTRITION

1.0 INTRODUCTION
Adults, teenagers and those working or interacts with children has to be
responsible for their safety, or in other words, safeguarding them. According to
SafeNetwork (2011, it might be difficult to accept, but e!ery child can be hurt,
put at risk of harm or abused, regardless of their age, gender, religion or
ethnicity. Safeguarding legislation and go!ernment guidance says that
safeguarding means"
• #rotecting children from maltreatment$
• #re!enting impairment of children%s health or de!elopment$
• &nsuring that children are growing up in circumstances consistent with the
pro!ision of safe and effecti!e care$
• 'aking action to enable all children and young people to ha!e the best
outcome.
(igure 1" 'he meaning of safeguarding children.
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GHS 1013 HEALTH, SAFETY AND NUTRITION
'he action we take to promote the welfare of children and protect them
from harm is e!eryone%s responsibility. &!eryone who comes into contact with
children and families has a role to play.According to SafeNetwork (2011, almost
one in fi!e children today has e)perienced serious physical abuse, se)ual abuse
or se!ere physical or emotional neglect at some point in their lifetime.
(igure 2" *hildren.
SafeNetwork (2011 goes on to say that one in 10 children in the +, has
been neglected.'here were a total of 21,-./ se)ual offences against children
recorded by police in the +, in 2011012.1ne in 1- children in the +, has been
physically abused.Around one in fi!e children in the +, has been e)posed to
domestic !iolence.1n a!erage, e!ery week in the +,, at least one child is killed
at the hands of another person.1!er a third of serious case re!iews in!ol!es a
child under one.
(or e!ery child placed on a child protection plan or the child protection
register, SafeNetwork (2011 estimates there are another eight children who are
suffering from abuse and neglect and not getting the support they need.(inally,
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GHS 1013 HEALTH, SAFETY AND NUTRITION
deaf and disabled children are more than three times more likely to be abused or
neglected than non2disabled children.
2.0 CHILD PROTECTION LAW AND SAFE WORKING PRACTICES IN
MALAYSIA
(igure /" A child holding a 3,eep 4e Safe5 sign.
According to AfridahAbas (2012, child abuse and !iolence are of global
concern and ha!e been an issue long outstanding. &!en though many steps
ha!e been taken by the go!ernment to pre!ent it, statistic shows that child abuse
cases keep increasing. *hildren e)perience !iolence in all spaces most familiar
to them" in homes, schools and communities they li!e in. 'hey also suffer abuse
and e)ploitation in orphanages, in place of detention and on streets.
'he willful maltreatment of children has been recogni6ed internationally as
a matter of great sociological impact with legal significant and medical
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GHS 1013 HEALTH, SAFETY AND NUTRITION
concern.7aw as one of the mechanism to ensure that all the policy and planning
of the go!ernment run smoothly. (or e)ample, it is a policy of the go!ernment of
4alaysia that no child is abused or neglected.
'herefore the go!ernment of 4alaysia has passed legislations to protect
the child from being abused and also to ensure the perpetrator being punished.
'he 8omestic 9iolence Act 1..- and the *hild Act 2001 are the main
legislations, which go!ern the case of child abuse. 'he other laws, which dealt
with the case of child abuse, are the #enal *ode and the &!idence of *hild
:itness Act 200; (AfridahAbas$ 2012.
According to the 4alaysian *hild Act 2001 (re!ised 200<, child protection
is a priority for the =o!ernment of 4alaysia. 'he4alaysia, a consolidation of
three pre!ious laws on issues relating to child protection and >u!enile >ustice,
namely the ?u!enile *ourts Act 1.-;, :omen and @oung =irls #rotection Act
1.;/ and *hild #rotection Act 1..1, is part of the protecti!e legal en!ironment
for children.
Abuse, neglect, abandonment or e)posing a child to physical and0or
emotional in>uries is punishable under this law. 'he 7aw also established the
National *ouncil for the #rotection of *hildren, which ad!ises the 4inister on
child protection issues. 'he *ouncil is responsible for the design of a
management system to report cases of children in need of protection and to
de!elop programs to educate the public on the pre!ention of child abuse and
neglect. 'he 7aw also set up *hild #rotection 'eams to coordinate locally based
ser!ices to families and children in need of protection.
'he challenge for +NA*&(, in partnership with the =o!ernment, the
Buman Cights *ommission of 4alaysia (S+BA,A4 and ci!il society, is to
promote awareness of the *hild Act especially in the conte)t of the broader
framework of the Convention on the Rights of the Child as well as to ad!ocate for
its effecti!e enforcement and application.
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GHS 1013 HEALTH, SAFETY AND NUTRITION
3.0 THE FOUR MAIN TYPES OF ABUSE AND THEIRINDICATORS
:orld Bealth organi6ation define child abuse as all forms of abuse
whether physical, emotional, se)ual, neglect, abuse, maltreatment or e)ploitation
which may cause in>ury or damage to the health, life, de!elopment or dignity of
the child done by those who ha!e the responsibilities, trust or authority o!er the
child.
Defore we go further, we need to understand that sometimes, we need to
differentiate between abuse and right of the parent to discipline their child. 'he
parent has the right to discipline their child as long as it is done in a reasonable
manner and moderate in degree and otherwise does not constitute cruelty.
Abuse and neglect are forms of maltreatment of a child. Somebody may
abuse or neglect a child either directly by inflicting harm, or indirectly, by failing to
act to pre!ent harm. *hildren may be abused in a family or in an institutional or
community setting, by those known to them, or, more rarely, by a stranger. An
adult or adults, or another child or children may abuse them.
According to NS#** (2010, there are four types of child abuse. 'hey are
defined in the +, =o!ernment guidance :orking 'ogether to Safeguard
*hildren 2010 (1.// E 1./< as follows. 'he first is physical abuse, the second is
emotional abuse, the third is se)ual abuse, and the fourth is neglect.
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GHS 1013 HEALTH, SAFETY AND NUTRITION
#hysical abuse may in!ol!e hitting, shaking, throwing, poisoning, burning
or scalding, drowning, suffocating, or otherwise causing physical harm to a child.
#hysical harm may also be caused when a parent or caregi!er fabricates the
symptoms of, or deliberately induces, illness in a child.
&motional abuse is the persistent emotional maltreatment of a child such
as to cause se!ere and persistent ad!erse effects on the child%s emotional
de!elopment. At may in!ol!e con!eying to children that they are worthless or
unlo!ed, inadeFuate, or !alued only insofar as they meet the needs of another
person. At may include not gi!ing the child opportunities to e)press their !iews,
deliberately silencing them or Gmaking fun% of what they say or how they
communicate. At may feature age or de!elopmentally inappropriate e)pectations
being imposed on children.
'hese may include interactions that are beyond the child%s de!elopmental
capability, as well as o!erprotection and limitation of e)ploration and learning, or
pre!enting the child participating in normal social interaction. At may in!ol!e
seeing or hearing the ill treatment of another. At may in!ol!e serious, causing
children freFuently to feel frightened or in danger, or the e)ploitation or corruption
of children. Some le!el of emotional abuse is in!ol!ed in all types of
maltreatment of a child, though it may occur alone.
Se)ual abuse in!ol!es forcing or enticing a child or young person to take
part in se)ual acti!ities, not necessarily in!ol!ing a high le!el of !iolence, whether
or not the child is aware of what is happening. 'he acti!ities may in!ol!e physical
contact, including assault by penetration, for e)ample, rape or oral se),or non2
penetrati!e acts such as masturbation, kissing, rubbing and touching outside of
clothing.
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GHS 1013 HEALTH, SAFETY AND NUTRITION
'hey may also include non2contact acti!ities, such as in!ol!ing children in
looking at, or in the production of, se)ual images, watching se)ual acti!ities,
encouraging children to beha!e in se)ually inappropriate ways, or grooming a
child in preparation for abuse. Se)ual abuse is not solely perpetrated by adult
males. :omen can also commit acts of se)ual abuse, as can other children.
Neglect is the persistent failure to meet a child%s basic physical and0or
psychological needs, likely to result in the serious impairment of the child%s health
or de!elopment. Neglect may occur during pregnancy as a result of maternal
substance abuse. 1nce a child is born, neglect may in!ol!e a parent or caregi!er
failing to pro!ide adeFuate food, clothing and shelter, including e)clusion from
home or abandonment, protect a child from physical and emotional harm or
danger, ensure adeFuate super!ision, including theuse of inadeFuate care2
gi!ers, or ensure access to appropriate medical care or treatment. At may also
include neglect of, or unresponsi!eness to, a child%s basic emotional needs.
3.1 Signs of abuse
3.1.1 Physical Abuse
4ost children will collect cuts and bruises as part of the rough2and2tumble
of daily life. An>uries should always be interpreted in light of the child%s medical
and social history, de!elopmental stage and the e)planation gi!en. 4ost
accidental bruises are seen o!er bony parts of the body, such as elbows, knees,
shins, and are often on the front of the body. Some children, howe!er, will ha!e
bruising that is more than likely inflicted rather than accidental.
Amportant indicators of physical abuse are bruises or in>uries that are
either une)plained or inconsistent with the e)planation gi!en, or !isible on the
Gsoft% parts of the body where accidental in>uries are unlikely, such as cheeks,
abdomen, back and buttocks. A delay in seeking medical treatment when it is
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GHS 1013 HEALTH, SAFETY AND NUTRITION
ob!iously necessary is also a cause for concern, although this can be more
complicated with burns, as these are often delayed in presentation due to
blistering taking place sometime later.
3.1.2 Emotional Abuse
&motional abuse can be difficult to measure, as there are often no
outward physical signs. 'here may be a de!elopmental delay due to a failure to
thri!e and grow, although this will usually only be e!ident if the child puts on
weight in other circumstances, for e)ample when hospitali6ed or away from their
parents% care. &!en so, children who appear well cared for may ne!ertheless be
emotionally abused by being taunted, put down or belittled. 'hey may recei!e
little or no lo!e, affection or attention from their parents or caregi!ers. &motional
abuse can also take the form of children not being allowed to mi) or play with
other children.
3.1.3 Sexual Abuse
Adults who use children to meet their own se)ual needs abuse both girls
and boys of all ages, including infants and toddlers. +sually, in cases of se)ual
abuse it is the child%s beha!ior that may cause you to become concerned,
although physical signs can also be present. An all cases, children who tell about
se)ual abuse do so because they want it to stop. At is important, therefore, that
they are listened to and taken seriously.
At is also important to remember that it not >ust adult men who se)ually
abuse children, because there are increasing numbers of allegations of se)ual
abuse of children against women and se)ual abuse can also be perpetrated by
other children or young people.
3.1.4 eglect
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GHS 1013 HEALTH, SAFETY AND NUTRITION
Neglect can be a difficult form of abuse to recogni6e, yet ha!e some of the
most lasting and damaging effects on children.
'he physical signs of neglect may include"
• *onstant hunger, sometimes stealing food from other children$
• *onstantly dirty or Gsmelly%$
• 7oss of weight, or being constantly underweight$
• Anappropriate clothing for the conditions.
*hanges in beha!ior, which can also indicate neglect, may include"
• *omplaining of being tired all the time$
• Not reFuesting medical assistance and0or failing to attend appointments$
• Ba!ing few friends$
• 4entioning being left alone or unsuper!ised.
4.0 TECHNIQUES TO SUPPORT CHILDREN IN PROTECTING
THEMSELVES
According to ,id#ower (201-, young people are at risk of assault,
abduction, and abuse e!en in caring families, schools, and communities. Skills
and knowledge are the keys to keeping kids safe. 'he good news is that there
are simple and effecti!e ways of teaching children how to protect themsel!es that
will work most of the time.
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GHS 1013 HEALTH, SAFETY AND NUTRITION
#arents, teachers, and other caregi!ers need to know that their children
are more likely to be harmed by someone they know than by a stranger. *hildren
need to ha!e clear safety rules both for strangers when they are out on their own
and for setting boundaries with people they know.
Anyone can be a child molester such as a neighbor, a relati!e, a family
friend, a youth group leader, a teacher, e!en another child. 'he best way to
protect your children%s personal safety is know what is happening with them.
4ake the time to ask them often, 3As there anything you%!e been wondering or
worrying about that you ha!en%t told meH5 and to listen to their answers with
patience and respect.
*hildren need to understand that there are different safety rules when they
are not in the care of their adult and when they are on their own. *hildren who
are only a short distance away from an adult in charge e!en for a few minutes
are on their own. 'hey don%t need to worry. 'hey >ust need to know what to do.
?ust telling children about safety or >ust showing children what to do is not
enough. :hen we >ust talk to children about danger, their raised awareness can
actually raise their le!el of an)iety. @oung people learn best by acti!ely
participating. #racticing children%s personal safety skills increases their
confidence and competence. At is important to do this in a way that is not scary,
but is fun.
According to Sherri =ordon (201-, sometimes bullies target other kids
simply because they look like an unaware or unprepared target. 'his is where
self2defense techniFues come in.:hen most people think of self2defense, they
think of hitting back or using karate. Dut a large part of self2defense has nothing
to do with hitting or striking another person. At in!ol!es being aware of our
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GHS 1013 HEALTH, SAFETY AND NUTRITION
surroundings, listening to our gut, lea!ing before a problem erupts, using a
confident !oice and carrying oursel!es with confidence.
(igure -" *hildren learning martial arts.
Bere are three ways we can teach our kids to defend themsel!es against
school bullies. (irst, use confident body language. 1ne of the best ways to
pre!ent bullying is to be sure our children ha!e a healthy self2esteem and carry
themsel!es with confidence. Deing self2confident in!ol!es ha!ing good posture,
walking with a purpose and making eye contact with those around them.
Second, stay in a group. Dullies are less likely to target someone who is
with a group of friends. De sure our children knows that it is best to go places in
groups, especially into bullying 6ones at school. (riendship is a protecti!e factor
against bullying. &!en ha!ing >ust one close friend can go a long way in
pre!enting bullying.
And third, trust our gut. 'each our kids to be aware of their surroundings.
(or instance, teach them to put their cell phones away and to look around them.
As there a group of rough2looking boys in the cornerH Deing aware of what%s
going on around them, not only will help protect our children from bullying, but it
also is an important life skill.
5.0 WAYS TO IMPLEMENT WORKING PRACTICES THAT SAFEGUARD
CHILDREN AND THE ADULTS WHO WORK WITH THEM
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GHS 1013 HEALTH, SAFETY AND NUTRITION
According to N#S** (2010, parents can learn about healthy child
de!elopment and how to build strong families$ listen to children and try to
understand what they are saying and doing, and why. 'aking the time to listen to
your child means they will feel better about themsel!es and be more likely to
come to you with problems. ,now what goes on in your children%s school and
how it responds to issues on child abuse and bullying.
According to the 8epartment of *hildren, Schools and (amilies (200.,
there are occasions when it is entirely appropriate and proper for staff to ha!e
physical contact with pupils, but it is crucial that they only do so in ways
appropriate to their professional role. A Ino touchI approach is impractical for
most staff and will in some circumstances be inappropriate. :hen physical
contact is made with pupils this should be in response to their needs at the time,
of limited duration and appropriate to their age, stage of de!elopment, gender,
ethnicity and background. Appropriate physical contact in schools will occur most
often with younger pupils.
All pupils ha!e a right to be treated with respect and dignity e!en in those
circumstances where they display difficult or challenging beha!ior. Adults should
not use any form of degrading treatment to punish a child. 'he use of sarcasm,
demeaning or insensiti!e comments towards pupils is not acceptable in any
situation. Any sanctions or rewards used should be part of a beha!ior
management policy which is widely publici6ed and regularly re!iewed.
(inally, there may be occasions when a distressed child needs comfort
and reassurance and this may in!ol!e physical contact. @oung children, in
particular, may need immediate physical comfort, for e)ample after a fall,
separation from parent etc. Adults should use their professional >udgment to
comfort or reassure a child in an age2appropriate way whilst maintaining clear
professional boundaries. :here an adult has a particular concern about the need
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GHS 1013 HEALTH, SAFETY AND NUTRITION
to pro!ide this type of care and reassurance, or is concerned that an action may
be misinterpreted, this should be reported and discussed with a senior manager
and parents or caregi!ers.
.0 CONCLUSION
8espite significant strides made by the go!ernment in impro!ing child
protection measures, in recent year, the cases of child abuse keep increasing.
'he laws and procedures alone cannot sol!e the problem. At is only one of the
methods of pro!iding solution to the problem. 4ore efforts ha!e to be taken to
make the society aware that child abuse is a crime and can causes a country the
loss of the loss of human potential.
According to AfridahAbas (2012, the 8epartment of Social :elfare under
the 4inistry of :omen, (amily and *ommunity 8e!elopment and N=1%s ha!e
carried out awareness campaigns periodically in mass2media and a nationwide
campaign through posters and billboards as the main source of medium. As for
the protection of the !ictim, they also pro!ide shelter for the !ictim.
*ommunity based pro>ect should also be de!eloped which in!ol!e the
society at large to create awareness that child abuse is a crime. 'hey should be
made well aware of the current situation, the law concerning the issues and
measures taken by the go!ernment and go!ernment agencies.
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GHS 1013 HEALTH, SAFETY AND NUTRITION
!.0 REFERENCES
1. AfridahbintiAbas$ 2012$ *hild Abuse in 4alaysia" 7egal 4easures for
the #re!ention of the *rime and #rotection of the 9ictim$ Anternational
?ournal of Social Sciences and Bumanity Studies.
2. Sherri =ordon$ 201-$ . :ays ,ids *an 8efend 'hemsel!es Against
Dullies$ http"00www.about.com
/. *hild Act 2001 Act <11$ 200<$ 7aws of 4alaysia$ 'he *ommissioner of
7aw Ce!ision 4alaysia.
-. 'he National Society for the #re!ention of *ruelty to *hildren
(NS#** Anform$ 2010$ *hild protection fact sheet" 'he definitions and
signs of child abuse$ N#S**.
J. Adults Sur!i!ing *hild Abuse$ 201-$ http"00www.asca.org.au
<. Arene !an der Kande$ 201-$ 'eaching ,ids to be Safe :ithout 4aking
'hem Scared$ http"00www.kidpower.org
;. SafeNetwork$ 2011$ :hat is safeguarding and why does it matter to
my organi6ationH$ http"00www.safenetwork.org.uk
8. 8epartment of *hildren, Schools and (amilies$ 200.$ =uidance for
Safer :orking #ractice for Adults who work with *hildren and @oung
#eople in &ducation Settings$ a 8*S( network of Ad!isors.
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GHS 1013 HEALTH, SAFETY AND NUTRITION
!umbe" of #o"ds$ 3%&'&(
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