Thursday, 13 Augst 2020 | 15:44 WIB

Social Affairs Minister Concerned over Sexual Harassment at Safe House

Indonesia Minister of Social Affairs Juliari P Batubara (kemensos)

JAKARTA, NETRALNEWS.COM - Indonesia Minister of Social Affairs Juliari P Batubara expressed concern over the alleged sexual harassment of teenager N (14) by a person in charge of a safe house in Lampung.

The Social Worker Service Unit of the Ministry of Social Affairs is coordinating with all relevant parties to ensure protection and provide assistance to victims.

Responding to this issue, Minister of Social Affairs Juliari P Batubara claimed to be very concerned about the sexual harassment of experienced by N in East Lampung. Moreover, the Minister of Social Affairs heard that the culprit was the person in charge of safe houses that should protect victims.

"This is certainly very disturbing for the conscience of all of us. This case makes all of us aware of those who work to protect children, to work harder, be more observant, and ensure the environment in which children are located must be an environment that is truly conducive to their growth and development," he said in Jakarta, Wednesday (07/08/2020).

The Social Affairs Minister's statement responded to sexual harassment experienced by N (14) by a safe house officer at the Integrated Service Center for Women and Children Empowerment (P2TP2A) in Lampung. The alleged sexual harasser was DA, who was N's counselor in P2TP2A, East Lampung Regency, Lampung Province.

The P2TP2A is an integrated service center for women and children under the Department of Population Control of the Family Planning for Women's Empowerment and Child Protection in East Lampung Regency. At present, this sexual harassment case has been rolled into the realm of law.

With regard to legal handling, the Minister of Social Affairs naturally surrenders the next rarity to the police. The Minister hoped that the perpetrators could be given legal sanctions according to the provisions of the applicable law so that they could have a deterrent effect on whoever did such harassment.

"For the legal process against the perpetrator, I heard that the local police had handled it. The Ministry of Social Affairs is in a position to respect the ongoing legal process," said the Minister.

Related to their duties and functions, the Ministry of Social Affairs through the Directorate of Social Rehabilitation of Children has deployed a Social Workers' Team that is tasked with assisting and providing treatment of trauma suffered by victims.

"We have deployed Social Workers Community Service to assist and provide trauma healing to victims. We also coordinate with relevant parties to ensure protection for victims, "he said.

Victim N was in a "safe house" because she was a victim of sexual harassment by her own uncle, in 2019. Against the perpetrators of the harassment in 2019, it had been legally processed. However, after the first case, the victim received assistance from the DA, who then allegedly instead committed sexual harassment.

For information, the Ministry of Social data shows, the numbers related to violence involving children are quite high. Throughout 2020 until June 2020, the Ministry of Social Affairs has conducted case responses to a total of 8,259 cases. Where as many as 3,555 are related to the category of Children Who Are Confronting the Law, and 1,433 in the category of Children Victims of Sexual Crimes.