Hong Kong – Government and all sectors of society act in concert to carry forward public education on child protection (with photos/video)

Government and all sectors of society act in concert to carry forward public education on child protection (with photos/video)


     The Chief Secretary for Administration and Chairperson of the Commission on Children (CoC), Mr Chan Kwok-ki, officiated at the “Let’s T.A.L.K. and Walk with Kids” Child Protection Campaign Award Presentation Ceremony 2023 this afternoon (November 18). The “Walk with Kids” thematic campaign of the CoC, the “Let’s T.A.L.K. – Child Protection Campaign” of the Police and the “Strengthening Families and Combating Violence” publicity campaign of the Social Welfare Department (SWD) joined forces to show the Government’s commitment to stepping up public education on child protection at the family, institutional and community levels.

     Delivering his opening remarks at the ceremony, Mr Chan said that it takes more than the efforts of the Government to provide a safe and stable environment to foster the diversified development and growth of the next generation, which requires the participation of the whole community. In particular, the CoC he chairs has been uniting relevant policy bureaux, departments and all sectors of society to tender advice and suggestions in building consensus. Apart from launching publicity and promotional activities, the CoC continues to explore and drive the implementation of various policy initiatives to enhance child protection.

     Mr Chan said, “One of the key initiatives is the establishment of a mandatory reporting mechanism to ensure early identification and intervention of serious child abuse cases. The Government has introduced the relevant Bill into the Legislative Council. We will fully assist in its scrutiny and strive for its early passage and the full implementation of the mechanism. The Government will also strengthen relevant support measures, including drawing up a Mandated Reporters’ Guide, and providing training for different categories of mandated reporters on their statutory obligation, which is very important. We will also increase the number of residential child care and foster care service places to provide emergency placement for children in need.”

     He added that the Government would continue to join with all sectors of society in steadfastly implementing the Youth Development Blueprint. It will enable all round the next generation of Hong Kong to widen their horizons, strive for self-improvement, grasp opportunities ahead and unleash their potential, so as to build a better Hong Kong.

     Accompanied by the Secretary for Labour and Welfare, Mr Chris Sun; the Commissioner of Police, Mr Siu Chak-yee; the Director of Social Welfare, Miss Charmaine Lee; the Consultant Community Medicine (Family and Student Health) of the Department of Health, Dr Thomas Chung; and the Convenors of the four Working Groups under the CoC, Mr Chan hosted the ceremony and led participants in the slogan “Let’s T.A.L.K. and Walk with Kids” to appeal to all sectors of society to act in concert on child protection.

     In the third year of the Police’s Child Protection Campaign, in collaboration with the CoC, the SWD and the Community Chest, activities including the Virtual Run Challenge, the “Dress Casual – Show Your Care” Post Design Competition, the Metaverse Exhibition and the enhancement of the “Child Protection WebApp” were launched to raise public awareness of child protection. Among them, the Virtual Run recorded 7 390 kilometres from over 5 000 participants, setting a world record for the most participants in a virtual run with child protection as the theme under the Sustainable Development Goals. The Dress Casual Post Competition received over 400 entries, raising funds for member agencies of the Chest providing child protection and welfare services.

     Summing up the achievements of the Campaign, Mr Siu highlighted the crucial role played by different sectors, including parents, teachers and social workers, in the upbringing of children. It is also essential to have a harmonious social environment and a stable legal system to facilitate children’s healthy development. Mr Siu said that the number of child abuse cases in the first 10 months of 2023 showed an upward trend compared to the same period in 2022 and some children fell into online traps. The Police are strengthening efforts including holding a number of seminars in early 2024 with professionals from the welfare, education, clinical psychology and other sectors to explore protecting children from threats of online sexual offenses.

     In addition, the SWD invited artistes Kaki Sham and Margaret Chung to play the roles of parents in two micro-movies on the theme of “Protecting Children Begins with the Family”, which convey how violence damages both the physical and mental well-being of children and the parent-child relationship as well as reminding parents to release emotions when under stress and seek help from family, friends or professionals when necessary. Highlights were shown at the ceremony and the public may visit the Heart and Hut YouTube channel (www.youtube.com/@heartandhut2478) for their full versions. On top of TV and radio Announcements in the Public Interest and social media publicity, the SWD also stepped up publicity in the community via public transport networks, entrances and exits of road harbour crossings and government buildings across the territory.

     Also officiating at the ceremony were the Deputy Commissioner of Police (Operations), Mr Chow Yat-ming; the Director of Crime and Security of Police, Mr Yip Wan-lung; the Assistant Commissioner of Police (Crime), Ms Chung Wing-man; and Ambassadors of the Child Protection Campaign Ms Guo Jingjing and Mr So Wa-wai. Over 80 awards were presented at the ceremony.

     Prior to the ceremony, Mr Chan hosted the CoC’s “Walk with Kids” stakeholder engagement event and expressed his gratitude to various sectors of society for their support for the CoC’s work. He said that the CoC’s work covered various aspects, including exploring and implementing children-related policy initiatives, rolling out a series of publicity, promotional and public engagement activities, and launching nearly 130 promotional and public educational projects to date through non-governmental organisations, schools and child concern groups funded by the Funding Scheme for Children’s Well-being and Development. He added that the CoC launched the “Walk with Kids” thematic campaign this year and played a leading role in systematically integrating the promotional efforts of the Government and various sectors of society to achieve synergy.

     Through sharing sessions and an exhibition, the stakeholder engagement event on the theme of “review and outlook” reviewed the CoC’s work since its establishment in June 2018, and views on future work priorities were exchanged. Some 100 stakeholders of the social welfare, education and healthcare sectors as well as representatives of the funded organisations attended the event today.

Hong Kong – FEHD urges sectors of funeral business and bereaved families to handle after-death arrangements as early as possible

FEHD urges sectors of funeral business and bereaved families to handle after-death arrangements as early as possible


     The Food and Environmental Hygiene Department (FEHD) today (March 2) said that its five crematoria have significantly increased their cremation sessions and extended service hours till the evening. The FEHD urged sectors of the funeral business and bereaved families of the deceased to handle after-death arrangements as early as possible. The FEHD will organise an online talk for the sectors of funeral business tomorrow (March 3) during which the Centre for Health Protection is invited to brief on the precautionary measures in handling of dead bodies.

     The FEHD had earlier written to the sectors of funeral business and garnered their support to assist the bereaved families to expedite the after-death arrangements and collection of dead bodies, with a view to alleviating the pressure on public mortuaries and hospital mortuaries.

     A spokesman for the FEHD said,”In response to the recent keen demand for cremation services, the FEHD has increased the daily cremation sessions from 130-140 to the current 180-200. All crematoria (except Cheung Chau) have extended their service hours till after 8pm in order to offer more sessions for the public. Currently, there is still capacity of the cremation sessions which will be further increased as and when necessary.”

     In addition, the spokesman added that the Department of Health, the Hospital Authority and the FEHD jointly promulgated the “Precautions for Handling and Disposal of Dead Bodies” in February 2020, which provided guidelines on handling of dead bodies to the funeral business sectors . Furthermore, the FEHD wrote to all licensed undertakers and funeral parlours in February 2020 reminding them to adopt the aforesaid guidelines when handling the dead bodies of persons infected with COVID-19 virus.

     The FEHD will organise an online talk tomorrow (March 3) afternoon with sectors of funeral business and CHP invited, to exchange views on funeral matters and precautionsary measures for handling of dead bodies.