Save the Children Hong Kong is deeply concerned about the horrific child abuse case charged in 2019, where a 22-month-old baby girl died after being tortured while in the care of a cohabiting couple. The two were prosecuted with child abuse and given a five years and four months prison sentence. The sentencing serves as a stern reminder that child abuse crimes will NOT be tolerated. The more important message here is that we, as a community, should come together and step up to better safeguard vulnerable children like the 22-month-old baby girl involved in this case.

Children’s safety and wellbeing should be paramount at all times. As a community, we must do whatever we can to protect children from violence and abuse. We encourage caregivers to take the initiative to seek help if they feel pressure on child-rearing, or if anyone encounters a suspected child abuse case. To avert the next tragedy to occur, we urge all parties to better protect children in Hong Kong:

• Government to put forward a comprehensive law to prohibit all corporal punishment and other cruel or degrading punishment of children in all settings, and speed up legislative process of the mandatory reporting of suspected child abuse case;
• Government and community organisations to conduct parent education programmes to provide appropriate guidance to parents and caregivers to increase their knowledge in nurturing their children in a positive way. Mandatory parent education should be provided to high-risk caregivers or those families in which abuse and neglect has already occurred.