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									                           P.S. THE CHILDREN

                 CHILD PROTECTION POLICY

1.     VISION & MISSION STATEMENT:

       In a move towards a world that upholds the rights and dignity of every
       child, our vision is to build safer communities where children are
       protected from sexual abuse and exploitation. To create this
       environment, our mission is to establish prevention mechanisms,
       strengthen treatment and support services and forge synergistic
       partnerships within communities.


2.     STATEMENT OF COMMITMENT:

2.1.   P.S. The Children is committed to the welfare of children and youth in
       Malaysia and opposes all forms of child abuse, child labour, especially
       child sexual abuse and exploitation.

2.2.   P.S. The Children is committed to upholding the law on child rights and
       welfare. This includes the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and
       Child Act 2001 of Malaysia.

2.3.   P.S. The Children believes that all children have a right to protection
       from abuse irrespective of race, social background, age, gender, skin
       color, disability, religion or beliefs.

2.4.   P.S. The Children believes that child abuse and exploitation is wrong.
       Keeping silent is also wrong, if it is known that a child is being abused
       or exploited.

2.5.   P.S. The Children believes in the importance of child protection, so that
       not only are children protected from abuse by P.S. The Children
       committee members, staff, donors, and volunteers, but also that
       preventative measures can be made to protect P.S. The Children staff,
       and P.S. The Children own integrity.

2.6.   P.S. The Children believes that children have the right to speak and be
       heard. Therefore where possible children will also be included as
       stakeholders and in research and other relevant reports/evaluations.

2.7.   All committee members, staff, interns and volunteers agree to this
       policy. It will be evaluated and reviewed every year.

2.8.   The different forms of child abuse are described by:




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       2.8.1. Physical Abuse: Actual or likely physical injury to a child, or
              failure to prevent physical injury, or suffering, to a child, including
              deliberate hitting, beating, shaking, throwing, burning, drowning,
              suffocating or poisoning.

       2.8.2. Mental/Emotional Abuse: Actual or likely severe adverse effect
              on the emotional and behavioural development of a child caused
              but persistent or severe emotional ill treatment or rejection. May
              involve conveying to the child that they are worthless, unloved or
              inadequate and cause children to feel frightened, in danger and
              corrupted.

       2.8.3. Neglect: The persistent or severe neglect of a child or the failure
              to protect a child from exposure to any kind of danger, including
              cold and starvation, or extreme failure to carry out important
              aspects of care, resulting in the significant impairment of the
              child’s health or development, including non-organic failure to
              thrive, begging and child labour.

       2.8.4. Sexual Abuse: Actual or likely exploitation of a child or
              adolescent, representing the involvement of dependent,
              developmentally immature children and adolescents in sexual
              activities they do not truly comprehend, to which they are unable
              to give informed consent or that violate social taboos or family
              rules, such as touching a child’s genitals, forcing a child to watch
              or take part in pornography or coercing the child to have sex. It is
              considered abuse whether or not the child consents.


3.     BEHAVIOURAL PROTOCOLS:

3.1.   P.S. The Children expects all its partner organisations, committee
       members, staff, interns, volunteers and visitors to encourage and give
       respect and dignity to all children associated with the work of
       Organization/Centre.

       The adults should also be :
       • Inclusive and involve all children without selection or exclusion on
          the basis of gender, disability, ethnicity, religion and any other status
       • Aware of any peer abuse (e.g. children bullying, discrimination
          against, victimizing or abusing children)

3.2.   P.S. The Children committee members, staff, interns, volunteers and
       visitors with direct contact with projects and children must sign a
       statement to say that they have read the policy, will respect it and
       understand that action will be taken in cases of inappropriate behaviour.
       Breaking these protocols will lead to disciplinary action and possible job
       loss for staff or dismissal of committee members or volunteers.




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3.3.   It will not be permissible for P.S. The Children staff, interns, volunteers
       and visitors to take photographs or video footage of children.
       Authorisation should be sought from the Director/Committee and strict
       regulations will be implemented on the nature of how photographs are
       taken. These photographs and/or video will not be used for any other
       purpose outside P.S. The Children without prior permission.

3.4.   Committee members, staff, intern, volunteers and visitors must never be
       alone with children who are not their own offspring in a private place
       that cannot be readily seen by other responsible adults. Where possible
       and practical, the ‘two - adult’ rule, wherein two or more adults
       supervise all activities where minors or children are involved and are
       present at all times, should be followed. If this is not possible, P.S. The
       Children staff members are encouraged to look for alternatives such as
       being accompanied by community members on visits to children. If it is
       not possible at all to follow the ‘two – adult’ rule, P.S. The Children staff
       members are to ensure that any activities with minors or children are
       done in a room or area that is visible from the outside and must not be
       locked.

3.5.   P.S. The Children committee members, staff, interns, volunteers and
       visitors need to be aware that they may work with children who,
       because of the circumstances and abuses they have experienced, may
       use a relationship to obtain “special attention”.

       The adult should:
       • Avoid being placed in a compromising or vulnerable position.
       • Is always considered responsible even if a child behaves
          seductively.

3.6.   P.S. The Children committee members, staff, interns, volunteers and
       visitors will not discipline a child in a way that is against the Convention
       on the Rights of the Child. This effectively means no tolerance to any
       form of violence against the child.

3.7.   Inappropriate behaviour toward children, including failure to follow P.S.
       The Children Behaviour protocols or sexual abuse of a child is grounds
       for discipline, up to and including dismissal from employment,
       volunteering/internship or board/advisory council membership.

3.8.   P.S. The Children committee members, staff, interns, volunteers and
       visitors must be concerned about perception and appearance in their
       language, actions and relationships with minors and children.

3.9.   P.S. The Children committee members, staff, interns, volunteers and
       visitors dress appropriately and culturally sensitive when they visit
       children, families, communities and programs or work with children.




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3.10. P.S. The Children committee members, staff, interns, volunteers and
      visitors should maintain a high standard of behaviour/character in
      presence of children. (Refer to Appendix for Code of Conduct)

3.11. Only authorised and trained P.S. The Children staff and volunteers are
      allowed to handle children with complicating problems. (Example:
      children who have been sexually abused). These children should be
      directed to P.S. The Children counselling team or professionals (Refer
      to P.S. The Children Referral List) with the consultation of the
      responsible officers.

3.12. P.S. The Children committee members, staff, interns and volunteers
      should seek to live up to the P.S. The Children Mission Statement and
      Core Values in all relationship with others in any circumstances.


4.     RECRUITMENT AND SCREENING:

4.1.   P.S. The Children committee members, staff, interns, volunteers and
       any authorised personnel will be carefully and properly screened during
       their recruitment period, including obtaining a police check where
       possible.

4.2.   P.S. The Children committee members, staff, interns and volunteers will
       be carefully and properly screened during their recruitment period which
       includes signing to agree to the Child Protection Policy and stating that
       there have been no previous convictions for abuse against children,
       violent behaviour or improper conduct.

4.3.   P.S. The Children will ensure that all the references of approved local
       candidates for work are checked, preferably by telephone, and recorded
       in the staff files before the new staff member is invited to take the
       position. This will include a verbal and written request to the referee of
       whether they have any concerns as to why the candidate should be
       employed to work with children.

4.4.   P.S. The Children staff, interns, volunteers and visitors agree to inform
       the Director/Committee Member immediately if new information arises
       that casts doubt on the team member’s trustworthiness with children.
       Such information would be treated as confidential and disclosed to the
       individual team member for appropriate action.

4.5.   Individuals who are hired as independent contractors are notified of P.S.
       The Children ‘s Policy and Required Standards for Child Protection and
       are made aware that they are expected to follow behaviour protocols
       set out in this policy document.

4.6.   In the best interests of children, offices should not hire anyone with a
       prior conviction for child abuse, paedophilia or related offences. In the
       event that local law prohibits this broad a hiring rule, no person with a


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       conviction for child abuse, paedophilia or related offences may be hired
       into any position which includes direct access to children. P.S. The
       Children reserves the right not to hire an applicant if the background
       check reveals that the person is not suitable to work with children.


5.     RESPONSES TO ALLEGATIONS:

5.1.   P.S. The Children committee members, staff, interns, volunteers and
       visitors will be encouraged to be open in discussing the potential of
       abuse within the organisation.

5.2.   Where an allegation has been made that any of P.S. The Children
       committee member, staff, intern, volunteer or visitor has abused a child,
       P.S. The Children will take the appropriate action to deal with the
       situation.

       5.2.1.   Where there is an allegation, first inform the Director. If the
                Director is the subject of the allegation, a Committee member
                must be informed.

       5.2.2.   The allegation will be kept confidential, with only those directly
                involved having the appropriate information.

       5.2.3.   All details will be entered on the P.S. The Children Allegation
                form and filed confidentially.

       5.2.4.   P.S. The Children committee members, staff, volunteers and
                visitors found to be widening the circle of confidentiality will
                have disciplinary action taken against them according to the
                rules of their sending agency. Committee members and staff
                will receive a written warning.

       5.2.5.   Any investigations will be kept confidential and take place
                under external advice and counsel.

       5.2.6.   Both survivor and alleged perpetrator will be treated with
                respect from the start of the process to the end.

       5.2.7.   P.S. The Children will not dismiss a child’s accusation of abuse
                without appropriate investigation, no matter who the alleged
                perpetrator is.

       5.2.8.   P.S. The Children will confer with other organisations in a case
                where the child involved requires extra protection.

       5.2.9.   Records will be made of all facts related to the investigation
                and allegation, and these will be carefully and confidentially
                filed by the Committee. (Refer to Appendix for Allegation
                Form)


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     5.2.10. If a foreigner is involved, the relevant Embassy will be
             informed.

     5.2.11. P.S. The Children will designate someone to deal with the
             media and the public if necessary. Consideration will be made
             beforehand by the Committee about how the police and media
             will be informed/involved.


6.   COMMUNICATION ABOUT AND TO CHILDREN:

     P.S. The Children recognises that the world wide web is increasingly
     being used by those seeking to abuse children, and that photographs
     are doctored to create further abuse of children. Therefore, P.S. The
     Children will only post pictures of groups of children on its website, and
     not individuals. It will never display pictures of children in brothels or in
     vulnerable situations. Neither will it use pictures of children for fund
     raising.

     Where photographs of children are used, P.S. The Children will take
     special care to protect children’s identities and specific geographic
     location in all materials.

     Disclosure of information about past or present abuse of children and
     any of the persons involved should be limited to only to those
     authorised people who need to know.

     Communications about children should use pictures that are decent and
     respectful, not presenting them as victims. Children should be
     adequately clothed and poses that could be interpreted as sexually
     suggestive should be avoided. Language that implies a relationship of
     power should also be avoided.

     Individuals or organisations requesting the use of P.S. The Children
     resources such as videos or photographs should be required to sign an
     agreement with the appropriate P.S. The Children entity as to the
     proper use of such materials. The agreement should include a
     statement that any use of such materials for purposes other than what
     is agreed upon could subject the borrowing individual or organisation to
     legal action. Furthermore, failure to adhere to the agreed upon use of
     the material will result in the immediate termination of
     Organization/Centre’s permission to use the subject materials and/or
     require immediate return of all materials provided by P.S. The Children
     as well as any copies of such materials.

     All correspondence with a child by the P.S. The Children volunteers
     must be supervised and authorised to avoid inappropriate or suggestive
     comments, requests or obscenities. In the event of inappropriate



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              correspondence being discovered, P.S. The Children reserves the right
              to sever the volunteer relationship.


     7.       TRAINING, EVALUATION AND MONITORING:

     7.1.     P.S. The Children will implement training to ensure that all committee
              members, staff, volunteers and visitors understand the content of this
              Child Protection Policy before signing their commitment.

     7.2.     P.S. The Children will be committed to the ongoing monitoring and
              evaluation of child protection procedures and behaviour protocols.


     7.3.     Once a year there will be an opportunity for all members, staff and
              volunteers to partake in a self appraisal and peer appraisal to monitor
              the behaviour of each other.

     7.4.     Should there be any concerns, these should be raised with the Director/
              Committee.

8.          DECLARATION OF COMMITMENT:

              To be signed by all P.S. The Children committee member, staff,
              volunteer, visitors and partner organizations. A copy will be kept on file
              in the P.S. The Children office.

9.          POLICY REVIEW:

              This P.S. The Children Child Protection Policy will be reviewed on a
              yearly basis. All P.S. The Children personnel shall be briefed
              accordingly on all and any changes to the Child Protection Policy and
              adherence to this policy shall be strictly enforced.




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Statement of Commitment to the P.S. The Children Child Protection Policy

   1.    I, _____________________________________ have read and
         understood the standards and guidelines outlined in this Child
         Protection Policy.
   2.    I agree with the principles contained therein and accept the importance
         of implementing child protection policies and practice while associated
         with P.S. The Children. I have not been accused or convicted of any
         offence involving physical or sexual abuse of children or young people.
   3.    I understand that if a complaint is brought against me regarding the
         abuse of children while engaged in P.S. The Children activities, the
         allegation will be thoroughly investigated in cooperation with the
         appropriate authorities.


   Name:_________________________________________________________

   Signature:______________________________________________________

   Date:__________________________________________________________

   Declaration of Criminal Convictions

   Have you ever been convicted of a crime? Yes ________ No ________

   If yes, please provide details of all criminal convictions, including those
   considered “spent”, and declare any previous investigations or allegations
   made against you. These will be kept confidential by the designated Child
   Protection Officer at P.S. The Children, who will assess whether they pose any
   risk or not in relation to child protection.


   ______________________________________________________________


   ______________________________________________________________




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APPENDIX 1.

                            CODE OF CONDUCT

CONTACT WITH CHILDREN

All contact with children must be discussed and agreed to in advance with
the P.S. The Children’s Director. No exceptions to this rule will be made.

   •   Do not smoke in front of children.
   •   Do not use bad language while working with children.
   •   Do not take or make personal calls in the presence of the children.
   •   Do demonstrate trust and responsibility in their relationships with the
       children that they may come in contact with during the course of their
       volunteer duties.
   •   Do report immediately to PS the Children’s Director any contact that they
       may have with a child during the course of their volunteer duties.
   •   Do not give any gifts to children that they may come to know during the
       course of their volunteer duties.
   •   Do immediately report to PS the Children’s Director of any disclosure of
       sexual abuse by a child during the course of their volunteer duties.
   •   Under no circumstances will you be permitted to physically discipline or
       restrain a child during the course of their duties.


DRESS CODE

For those whose work involves contact with children, smart casual dress is
encouraged, and:

   •   Please be cautious of what message your clothing may send.
   •   Please do not wear clothing with potentially offensive language or images.
   •   If you choose to wear a skirt, please make sure that the length is
       appropriate.
   •   Please do not wear low-cut tops, “spaghetti-strapped” shirts, and bare
       midriff shirts.

If your clothing is inappropriate for the environment, you may be asked to leave to
change your clothing.


BOUNDARIES

When working with children, do maintain boundaries around their personal lives:

   •   Under no circumstances will you disclose any personal problem or situation
       to a child.
   •   Children will be curious about the your personal life and may sometimes
       know the most basic things such as if you are married or where you were


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       born, but do not provide any details to the child. You should discourage
       further questions by changing the subject.
   •   Things children do not need to know about our lives includes: divorce,
       custody issues with our children, dates or social activities, death of a family
       member, family illness etc.

HARASSMENT POLICY

P.S. The Children has a zero tolerance policy with respect to Personal/Sexual
Harassment. Personal/Sexual Harassment in any form is strictly prohibited and
may be grounds for termination as a volunteer, or, in the case of an employee,
immediate dismissal for just cause without notice or pay in lieu of notice.

Personal/Sexual Harassment
   • Sexual harassment is any conduct, comment, gesture or contact of a
      sexual nature that one would find to be unwanted or unwelcome by any
      individual, or that might, on reasonable grounds, be perceived by that
      individual as placing a condition of sexual nature on an employment or
      career development.

   •   Personal harassment means any conduct whether verbal or physical that is
       discriminating in nature, based upon another person' race, colour,s
       ancestry, place of origin, political beliefs, religion, marital status, physical or
       mental disability, sex, age or sexual orientation. It is discriminatory
       behaviour, directed at an individual, that is unwanted or unwelcome and
       causes substantial distress in that person and serves no legitimate work-
       related purpose.


Code of Conduct Review

This P.S. The Children Code of Conduct will be reviewed on a yearly basis. All
P.S. The Children personnel shall be briefed accordingly on all and any changes
to the Code of Conduct and adherence to the Code shall be strictly enforced.




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  ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF RECEIPT OF P..S THE CHILDREN’S CODE OF
                       CONDUCT


I have received a copy of the PS the Children’s Code of Conduct, and have read,
understood its contents and will abide to it.



_________________________________
Candidate’s Name (Please Print)



___________________________                      _______________________
Candidate’s Signature                            Date



_________________________________                _________________________
Supervisor’s Signature                           Date




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                                                                       APPENDIX 2.
                                P.S. THE CHILDREN
                       Allegation Form for Volunteers/ Interns


Date of Report: _____________________            Time of Report:_______________

Name of referrer (Full name):__________________________________________

Tel. No. (Hse): ______________________           H/Phone No.: ________________

Relationship between Referrer and Child : _______________________________

Type of CAN Allegation: (Tick ): Verbal          : _______
                                 Visual          : _______
                                 Physical        : _______
                                 Other           : _______

Pls. elaborate if Other:_______________________________________________
                        _______________________________________________

Child ‘s Information     :_______________________________________________


Contact Info of Child :_______________________________________________


Type of Support Needed :____________________________________________


We hope you would be able to assist with the appropriate actions soonest
possible and should you need further clarification if needed in relation to the
above case.


Thank you very much.


Yours faithfully,
Signature     :                                                Designation :
Name          :                                                Date          :




P.S The Children personnel – Name :
Signature




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