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AERINA FAZLIN BINTI ARJUNAIDI

TASK 2 : Question 4

Question 4 : Based on research outcomes and media reports, discuss to what extent,
children rights in Malaysia is being fought and what are the efforts implemented in
protecting them. As a teacher, what are the steps you would suggest in reducing the
number of cases of childrens right abuses.

Children is like a white cloth. We are the one who coloured them. Based on the
statement, it portrays that we play a vital role in determining a childs life. According to
UNICEF, children are persons that aged below than 18 years old. However, Children
Rights Colloquium (CRC) defined human being as child so long as he or she is under
the age of eighteen (unless an earlier age of majority is recognised by a countrys law),
including human beings at the foetal stage (Kwan, V., 2010).
As a developing country, we are not excluded from having children rights abuse
problems among our society. Therefore, based on the problems, I think that our country
still lack in fighting for the childs right. This is also being supported by Gomez, J. (2014)
in his writing title, The System Failed Siti Soffea Emelda, say child activist. Thus,
there were a few examples that show childrens right is not fully fought in Malaysia.
First, in the illegal and immigrant children in Malaysia do not get their rights
protected. For example, they are excluded from getting free medication in the
government hospitals and they are also could not enter the government schools like the
other children. This is supported by UNICEF(2010), that reports on the children rights in
Malaysia. In the report, it stated that children from indigenous and minority communities;
children with disabilities; refugee and asylum-seeking, irregular migrant, stateless, and
undocumented children; children from the rural and urban poor; and LGBTIQ children
can face significant restrictions on their ability to access education, healthcare, birth
registration and/or child protection services. As a human being, those children also have
right to get education and healthcare like the other children. However, because of their
status, their rights are being abused by this country.

AERINA FAZLIN BINTI ARJUNAIDI


TASK 2 : Question 4

In addition, there is also statistics that shows 90% of Tamil school children do not
get to attend preschool because of poverty and Permata does not set up kindergartens
in Indian neighborhoods, or allow Indian children into these kindergartens. Arising out of
this, 42% of standard one pupils in Tamil schools cannot read and write at all because
they did not attend kindergarten (Kuan, V., 2010). This clearly depicts that the right to
education in Article 28(1) in Federal Constitution of Malaysia has not fully fought to all
the children in Malaysia. For that reason, I think that the children rights in Malaysia is
not strongly fought because there are still unfortunate children that are left out from
getting their rights protected.
Secondly, the children rights in Malaysia is not fully enforced. For example, ever
since 1979, inflicting physical punishment on children has been explicitly and totally
forbidden in Sweden. Children in that country also are allowed to live according to their
choice (Qishin Tariq, 2014). This is align with the children rights mentioned by the CRC
that children should be protected and given freedom of thought. According to the latest
news about the Malaysian couples that were sentenced to jail and they have to pay their
children 67,200 SEK (RM33,900) and 36,400 SEK (RM18,362), respectively because
they punish their children because their children did not want to pray.
In contrast, in Malaysia, punishment for abusing a child is too linear. For
example, a six-year-old girl and her two-year-old brother that had been chained to the
toilet and left without food for several hours, their father has been detained to assist in
the investigation under Section 31 (1) of the Child Act and faces a jail term of up to a
year or a fine of RM2,000 or both (Meriam Mohamad,2012). In other words, even
though the father has been caught, he only has to pay for Rm2000 and the maximum
jail is only a year. Therefore, it clearly shows that protection for the children rights in this
country is still weak. As a result, there are many cases bout childrens right being abuse
in this country because the public are not afraid with the punishment set by our
countrys law.
In addition, according to Ramis (2013), There is no denying that the number of
child abuse cases in Malaysia is skyrocketing. According to the Social Welfare
Department, there were 1,242 reported cases in 2002. This number increased to 1,999
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AERINA FAZLIN BINTI ARJUNAIDI


TASK 2 : Question 4

in 2006 and 3,047 in 2010. That is an increase of about 145% in less than 10 years.
Indeed, this problem is happening might be because of the weakness in child rights
laws.
Thirdly, there are children that are being discriminated such as children that living
with HIV/AIDS. According to CRC report 2010, those children face stigmatisation,
difficulties in accessing education, and effective care and support services that meet
their needs. Thus, it clearly shows that in Malaysia, childrens right has not really being
fought. This is because, children with the HIV/AIDS hardly get the same opportunity to
accessing education like the other children. Therefore, our country should give the
same opportunity to all the children to get education that align with our National
Philosophy of Education that claims, Education should help children to the full potential,
and the curriculum should contribute to the development of a holistic and balance
physical, emotional, rational, intellectual and spiritual growth.
Therefore, to there are a few efforts that had been done to ensure the childrens
right is being protected. First, the Malaysian government has introduced National Child
Policy and National Child Protection Policy, and modeled its Plan of Action on the
General Principles of the Children Right Convention (Child Rights Coalition Malaysia,
2001). In the convention, a few issues had been brought up to reinforce the childrens
right. For example, in 2010, it lifted reservations to Children Rights Convention (CRC)
Article 1 (defining the age of a child); Article 13 (regarding freedom of expression); and
Article 15 (regarding freedom of assembly and participation). In 2011, the government
also signed two of three Optional Protocols to the CRC, on the sale of children, child
prostitution and child pornography, and on children in armed conflict. Therefore, by
having all the policy and conventions, it is hope that childrens right in Malaysia could be
protected better in the future.
The second effort implemented in protecting them is Childline Malaysia. This is
a non-profit project of the Malaysian Children TV Programme Foundation (Childline,
2010). One of the aim of this foundation is to focus on the protection and listening'
rights of the child. There are a lot of programs that had been done by the foundation to
protect the childrens right in Malaysia. For example, in November 2010, Childline
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AERINA FAZLIN BINTI ARJUNAIDI


TASK 2 : Question 4

Malaysia established the 24-hour national helpline for Malaysia known as 15999
Childline. In conclusion, besides the effort done by the government, this programme
also does help to protect the childrens right. Figure 1 shows how this programme is
operated.

Figure 1 : Childline call centre operations


Source : mctf.org
The third efforts to protect the childrens right are by increase the public
awareness in Malaysia about the childrens right. For example, the Malaysian Child
Resource Institute (MCRI) promotes the healthy development of children by raising
awareness on the rights of the child and advocating for better standards in the provision
of early childhood care and education (mcri,2014). For example, this institution did
public exhibition and forum title At The Children For Child Protection Forum And
Exhibition. Therefore, this effort could educate the public about the children rights that
our society least aware about it. In addition, it also could change our societys mind set
about children and the importance of respecting the childrens right.

AERINA FAZLIN BINTI ARJUNAIDI


TASK 2 : Question 4

As a teacher, there are a few steps that I could suggest in reducing the number
of cases of childrens right abuses. Firstly, I would educate the pupils parents in the
school about the childrens right. For instance, I could make a seminar on the
importance of protecting the childrens right. During the seminar, I would introduce what
are the childrens right to the parents and as the parents, what are their roles to ensure
that their parents could respect their right as a children. For example, in Malaysia,
childrens voice are least heard by the parents. This could happen because of as an
Asian, the children are expected to follow the elders instruction and if they are consider
as rude if they try to give their opinion. Conversely, the elders would think that the
children are talk back to the elder. So, by conducting this seminar to the parents, the
parents could be educate about the childrens right and they could change their mind
set and starts to respect their childs right.
Secondly, to reduce the number of cases of childrens right abuses, I should play
my role as a teacher by giving the same opportunity to all the pupils at school. For
instance, nowadays, school would give free tuition only for those poor pupils and let the
more affordable pupils to get their own tuition outside the school. As a teacher, I should
respect the pupils right to get education equally and for free. Thus, I should offer the
free tuition for all my pupils regardless their economy status. In addition, I also could
make a suggestion box in the school as one of the effort to listen to the pupils voice and
opinion. Hence, the pupils could feel that their rights are not being neglected at the
school.
Thirdly, I could make report to the higher authority if I found any cases that abuse
the childrens right. For example, I would make a report to the Jabatan Kebajikan
Masyarakat (JKM) if I found any of my pupils that being neglected and their rights being
abused by their parents. Thus, the childrens right could be protected by the respected
departments that protect the childrens right and the parents will get the suitable
punishment for their action. In my opinion, this is one of the good steps to protect the
childrens right because it could be as an awareness or warning to the other parents not
to do the same mistake. This is because, there is other person will report about they
abusing their childs right and they would get the same punishment if they do not take a
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AERINA FAZLIN BINTI ARJUNAIDI


TASK 2 : Question 4

good care of their children. As a result, the number of cases of childrens right abuses
could be reduced.
Fourthly, as a teacher, I could do public awareness activities to enhance the
public awareness towards the importance of protecting the children rights. Hence, I
could provide information to the public about children rights. Moreover, according to
Goldman, J. et. al. (2003), such activities have the potential to reach diverse community
audiences: parents and prospective parents, children, and community members,
including professionals. So, by getting support from the public could help me to spread
the information about protecting the childrens right to the bigger circle of peoples.
Lastly, as a teacher, to reduce the number of childrens right abuse cases, I
would educate my pupils about their right. This is because, our society rarely inform the
children about their right. For that reason, the children does not know when their right
are being abuses by the elder especially their parents. In addition, I also could teach the
steps that they could do if they think their rights are being abused. Thus, by letting the
children to know about the right that they have, they could stand for it and would not be
manipulated by the adults anymore.
Above all, I think that the children rights in our country does not really fought.
Even though there are many efforts had been done by the government to protect the
childrens right, the implementation of the law to protect the childrens right was still
weak and there are still a lot of children that are being neglected from getting the right to
get free education and medication such as the immigrants and children in the rural area.
Furthermore, there are also a few efforts that had been implemented in
protecting the children rights such as introducing a few policy such as in the National
Child Policy and National Child Protection Policy, 15999 Childline and Malaysian Child
Resource Institute (MCRI). There are many factors that might contribute to this issue.
For example, as an Asian, we have a strong cultural value. Therefore, the childrens
right might not being highlighted as the children rights in the western. As a result, there
are many children rights abuses happened in this country.

AERINA FAZLIN BINTI ARJUNAIDI


TASK 2 : Question 4

Therefore, as a teacher, there are a few suggestions to reduce the number of


child rights abuses. For example, I could educate my pupils parents about their
children rights, I could give the same opportunity to all my pupils to be protected and
get education, I could report to the higher authority if I found my pupils right being
abused, I could do public awareness activity to educate the public about the childrens
right and finally I could educate my pupils about their right so that they could know how
to protect themselves in the future.

References

AERINA FAZLIN BINTI ARJUNAIDI


TASK 2 : Question 4

Noriati A. Rashid, Ying, B. P., Sharifah Fakhriah Syed Ahmad &vZuraidah A. Majid.
(2010). Guru dan cabaran semasa : Hak asasi kanak-kanak. Oxford Fajar Sdn. Bhd.
Selangor.
The Commissioner of Law revision, Malaysia. (2006). Laws of Malaysia : Act 611.
Percetakan Nasional Malaysia Bhd.
UNICEF

Malaysia.

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http://www.unicef.org/malaysia/childrights_crc.html at July 12,2014
Goldman, J., Salus, M. K., Wolcott, D., Kennedy, K. Y. (2003). A coordinated response
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abuse

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neglect:

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https://www.childwelfare.gov/pubs/usermanuals/foundation/foundationi.cfm at July 12,


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Mokhtar Mariam. (2012). Child abuse is rising in Malaysia. Retrieved from
https://my.news.yahoo.com/blogs/yahoo-malaysia-newsroom/child-abuse-risingmalaysia-033327740.html at July 12,2014.
Tariq Qishin. (2014). Swedish court finds Malaysian couple guilty of hurting children,
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http://www.thestar.com.my/News/Nation/2014/03/28/Swedish-child-abuse-trial-couplefound-guilty/ at July 12,2014.

AERINA FAZLIN BINTI ARJUNAIDI


TASK 2 : Question 4

Rames. T. S. (2013). Who should to be blame?. The insider Malaysia online news.
Retrieved from www.freemalaysiatoday.html at July 2014