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MoI's smart app helps 20,000 report child abuse

Ismail Sebugwaawo /Abu Dhabi
ismail@khaleejtimes.com Filed on October 21, 2019 | Last updated on October 21, 2019 at 06.19 am
mol, app, hemayati, child abuse

(Alamy)

The app Hemayati, which means 'protect me' in English, allows children to send alerts to their parents when they are in danger.

More than 20,000 residents have used the child protection smart mobile app Hemayati to report cases of child abuse in the UAE, seek consultation and enquire about related services, since January 2018.

The app Hemayati, which means 'protect me' in English, allows children to send alerts to their parents when they are in danger. It also helps parents track their children's movements.

On the sidelines of the presentation of the third comprehensive human rights report at the United Nations, the UAE Ministry of Interior (MoI) said that at least 20,750 people have used their Hemayati application since the beginning of last year.

These included cases of suspected child abuse, people seeking consultation about child protection and enquiring about the services provided by the Child Protection Centre.

The mobile app, which is available on Apple Store and Google Play, was designed by the MoI to help families provide protection for children.

"It enables users to report child abuse cases and the identity of the victims is kept confidential," said an officer from the ministry.

"The ministry launched the toll-free (116111) hotline in 2015 to receive reports of child abuse or suspected child abuse and ensure children's safety and protection."

The hotline is part of an integrated system designed to facilitate reporting of child abuse cases by phone or via the Hemayati smart phone app.

According to officials, the app provides its users with an overview of laws and legislations related to child protection, and can be used by all segments of society, including parents, teachers, doctors and children themselves.

Authorities said their specialised team handles the reports of child abuse and provides quick advice and support to the affected. It takes the necessary action in all cases and refers most cases to the police. Cases that require investigation and social and psychological support are referred to the Social Support Centers.

"The hotline is the first communication channel to allow community members to report suspected cases of child abuse or neglect, in order to provide safety, security and protection to all children in the UAE," said MoI officials. "Community members should communicate with the police to report any suspected child abuse incident, because this constitutes a legal obligation."

Reports may also be made via the ministry's Child Protection Centre's website.

ismail@khaleejtimes.com

Ismail Sebugwaawo


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