PETALING JAYA: Child abuse cases could be linked to a family’s financial problems, as well as to substance abuse or mental illness affecting the parents.
Deputy Women, Family, and Community Development Minister Siti Zailah Mohd Yusoff said this when replying to Sabri Azit (PAS-Jerai) in the Dewan Rakyat on the statistics for child abuse.
She said there had been a decline in the number of child abuse cases reported in the first nine months of this year.
She said 3,875 child abuse cases were reported from January to September this year, compared with 6,061 cases for the same period in 2019 and 5,578 in 2018.
Just yesterday, a 20-month-old baby girl was stabbed by a man in Puchong Permai near here. Police said a urine test showed traces of methamphetamine and that he was suffering from emotional distress.
According to Siti Zailah, there were four types of abuse – physical, sexual, emotional and child neglect.
“We had 1,703 physical abuse cases in 2018, 1,571 in 2019, and 1,120 until September this year. Meanwhile, there were 1,705 sexual abuse cases in 2018, 1,865 in 2019 and 1,373 in the first nine months of this year.
“A total of 124 emotional abuse cases were reported in 2018, 113 in 2019, and 131 until September this year.
“Welfare authorities attended to 2,046 child neglect cases in 2018, 2,521 in 2019 and 1,251 in the first nine months of the year,” she told the Dewan Rakyat.
She added that all parties involved could help report any form of child abuse to the authorities.