Suhakam to lodge complaint over mistreatment
Reports by LESTER KONG, YUEN MEIKENG, ZALINAH NOORDIN and DESIREE TRESA GASPER
JOHOR BARU: Suhakam will visit the Taman Sinar Harapan home in Selangor and forward a formal complaint on the mistreatment of the home’s residents to the authorities.
Commissioner Datuk N. Siva Sub- ramaniam said Suhakam would also talk to visitors to the home and get a clearer picture of the situation.
“Everyone deserves to be treated humanely, even those who are mentally unwell,” he said when commenting on the condition of the Taman Sinar Harapan home residents in Kuala Kubu Baru.
He said besides it being demoralising to treat residents like animals, the environment itself was not conducive for the patients who could not speak up for themselves.
Siva Subramaniam said Suhakam, which had received a verbal complaint about the home two days ago, was particularly concerned over the well-being of the children there.
“Feeding them cough syrup to keep them docile is terribly wrong as children should be treated with extra care,” he said, expressing his shock at both the quality of the food served there and the ratio of employees to the number of residents.
Petaling Jaya City Council (MBPJ) councillor Anthony Thanasayan said the mistreatment of the residents reflected on how clueless the centre’s staff members were on the rights of the disabled.
“This case may only be the tip of the iceberg. The Government should thoroughly check both private and public welfare centres whether they provide basic needs such as the right to be treated properly,” he said, adding that untrained welfare workers should not be allowed to care for disabled patients.
Independent Living and Training Centre president Francis Siva called on Social Welfare Department director-general Datuk Meme Zainal Rashid to resign from her position.
“We just want a good quality of life with the basic necessities,” Francis said.PET+BLOGSPOT is the official online blog of the Malaysian Animal-Assisted Therapy for the Disabled and Elderly Association (Petpositive).
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