Deputy Women, Family and Community Development minister Hannah Yeoh said children are important aspect of the nation that the country couldn’t afford to lose due to act of violence and negligence. NSTP/ Roslin Mat Tahir.

PUTRAJAYA: Parents are advised not to look for prospective child care providers via online, instead go by personal recommendation, opinions from the ministry, as well as Association of Registered Childcare Providers Malaysia (PPBM) for Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE).

Deputy Women, Family and Community Development minister Hannah Yeoh said children are important aspect of the nation that the country couldn’t afford to lose due to act of violence and negligence.

“The ministry urges parent to never ever look for babysitters and caregivers online.

“Never ever choose anyone that you don’t know to care for your child. Always go by personal recommendation or someone who you know,” she stressed.

She said it was the ministry’s wish to make sure parents could go to work peacefully, knowing that their children are in safe hands.

Yeoh was speaking during a press conference held in conjunction with the launching of ‘Checklist and Home-based Babysitter Selection’.

The checklist, which was developed by PPBM and ECCE, was launched by the Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail who is also the Women, Family and Community Development minister.

The checklist outlines five aspects which need attention before sending a child to a babysitter.

The aspects were environment, caregivers’ personality, experience and qualifications, their family and those who live in the same household, and the number children being taken care of.

The checklist also provides guidelines on aspects parents should look out for after sending their children to a caregiver – children’s response, caregivers’ response and signs of abuse.

Yeoh also urged parents to take serious notice on the early signs of abuse shown by their child.

“These are signs are important. Never ignore any signs and follow your parental instincts,” she added.

Upon the launch, she said an infographic would be shared with every parliamentarian to be shared and conveyed to their constituencies.

Yeoh also said the ministry was working to have a comprehensive screening system in place for childcare providers by next year.

“With the screening system, parents will be able to look up a person’s personal records, including their criminal history, if any. It will be similar to immigration blacklist.

“We are not trying to stop people from finding job opportunities, but we want to prevent those with a history of crime from working with children,” she added.