Hong Kong care home accused of lying over sex assaults

Mother demands the truth over what really happened to girl, 7, at facility

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 29 March, 2017, 11:52pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 30 March, 2017, 1:29am

The mother of a seven-year-old girl who was sexually assaulted twice by a nine-year-old boy in a Kwai Chung care home has ­accused the facility of lying to ­cover up its gross negligence.

She also called on the government to tell the truth and find out what actually happened.

Democratic Party lawmaker ­Andrew Wan Siu-kin, who is helping with the case, said the Social Welfare Department should ­investigate the matter instead of waiting two months for the home to deliver a final report.

Girl, seven, sexually assaulted by boy, nine, at Hong Kong small group home

The mother,given the false name Ms Fan, hit out at Hong Kong Children and Youth Services on Wednesday after meeting agency director Rebecca Ng Pui-ling and assistant director of social welfare Fung Man-chung.

During the closed-door meeting, Fan said Ng had apologised but she found this unacceptable.

According to Wan, Ng said the first incident happened at lunchtime when the only caretaker was away for 10 minutes to accept a phone call.

Calls for action after Hong Kong care home sexual assault claims

“The institution also gave us a different version about the ­second incident as they guessed it took place in the morning with the girl forced to take off only her ­trousers,” Wan said.

“But according to the girl it took place at night and she was forced to take off her underwear too.

“There are a lot of discrepancies between our versions.”

I am really afraid that this ­incident [of sexual assault] will be dismissed lightly eventually
Ms Fan, mother of girl

She accused the care home of trying to downplay the sexual ­assaults with a different version regarding the times and details of the assaults.

Fan said her daughter was still highly emotional and showed some self-destructive tendencies such as banging her head on the wall.

“I am really afraid that this ­incident will be dismissed lightly eventually,” she said.

The agency runs the care home for youngsters, aged four to 18, who cannot receive adequate family care.

The girl and a seven-year-old boy are believed to have been asked by a nine-year-old boy, who stayed at the same home, to ­perform oral sex on him on ­December 21 last year.

Two days later, the girl was asked by a 14-year-old girl to enter the boys’ room.

The same boy then told her and the seven year old to take off their clothes.

Fan later made a report to ­police but was told that children under 10 could not be charged.

If we find [the home’s] service fails to meet our requirements, we can reduce or stop our subsidies
Social Welfare Department spokesman

A department spokesman said late Wednesday the care home had already submitted an interim report to it with suggestions for improvement. “Our department staff have visited the institution to examine its service standards. We also demand it to provide more information in response to its interim report and also updates on its suggested improvement measures. If we find that its service fails to meet our requirements, we can reduce or stop our subsidies to it,” he said.

He added the department also provided psychological counselling and support services for the victim, who is to be relocated to another care home next month. She moved back home after the incident.

As to the other children involved in the case, they were now being followed up by social workers with suitable family and welfare support services, he said.

The care home had not returned calls by press time.