Tackle unbecoming behaviour holistically, suggests Fatimah

Datuk Fatimah Abdullah

Datuk Fatimah Abdullah

SIBU: Unacceptable behaviour among students and youths should be tackled holistically as it is an accumulation of total experiences since birth.

Welfare, Women and Family Development Minister Datuk Fatimah Abdullah said this when asked if stepping up enforcement was a move in the right direction to curtail bullying and violent behaviour among students and youths.

Bernama recently reported University Kebangsaan Malaysia’s school of psychology and human development lecturer Associate Professor Dr Romzi Ismail as saying that enforcement against bullying and violent behaviour among students and youths in the country should be intensified as such incidents were getting more prevalent.

“I am of the opinion that any sort of behaviour expressed by any individual is an accumulation of total experiences of acceptable and unacceptable learnt right from your birth.

“Because of this, addressing unacceptable behaviour should be tackled holistically.

“All factors and all determinants that contribute to individual behaviour should be addressed accordingly.

“Home, school and community factors should be addressed,” Fatimah told The Borneo Post yesterday.

Romzi was also reported as stating that the committee set up to combat the issue should be more active and firm to curb such social ill, adding that students should be warned against adopting such a negative attitude.

Meanwhile, Malaysian Crime Prevention Foundation (MCPF) vice-chairman Lee Lam Thye stressed that there was a need to tighten discipline against bullying. He noted the strong bullying the weak or seniors bullying juniors in schools.

Even in girls’ schools, there were bullying cases, he said.

“I think counselling should be given as a starting point. Stern punishment be meted out only as a last resort or when counselling fails,” Lee said.

He reckoned authorities needed to work out effective action to curtail bullying.

Turning to parent-teacher associations, he figured they could play a pivotal role in helping to curb the social ill.

“They need to work in concert to weed out this problem,” Lee pointed out.

Sarawak Bumiputera Teachers Union (KGBS) on the other hand, suggested that more emphasis be given to the issue of bullying among students during moral, religious and civic lessons.

KGBS president Ahmad Malie opined that if teachers, especially those teaching these subjects, repeatedly drive the point to students that bullying was a despicable act, the issue could be overcome. Ahmad also called for concerted efforts to tackle the issue.