Clifton R. Emery
Clifton R. Emery
Dr Clifton R. Emery is an associate professor of social work and social administration at the University of Hong Kong. He is also the academic consultant for Help for Children (HFC) Asia. His research and practice embrace populations made vulnerable by domestic violence, child maltreatment, human trafficking, and refugee status. Recent research examines relationships between totalitarian-style control and violence. He also does some North Korean human rights work.

A Law Reform Commission report recommends criminalising the failure to protect a child in cases of abuse resulting in death or serious harm. However, seeking to bring more parties to justice when a child dies may not deter abuse, and may even worsen it.

On both sides of the political spectrum, tolerance of violence is increasingly becoming an indicator of loyalty. What Hong Kong needs is for both sides to reflect and recommit to the principle of respect for non-violent civil disobedience.

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To protect its freedoms, Hong Kong’s communities and institutions should put issues affecting them to a vote. The majority should not be held hostage by the wilful behaviour of the few.