PRESS RELEASE 20/12/2015 Government Urged to Resolve Issues Faced by Under Privileged School Going Children School uniforms and associated school required equipments and tools have increased in price over the past decade, but more sharply over the past two years. Enforcement is lacking to continuously check and review these price increases. Government is urged to examine and review this situation and if necessary impose severe penalties on these defaulting traders.
To ensure that the School going children are equipped with the basic tools and uniforms, Sivasanta Derma Clinic and Penang Hindu Association (PHA) had jointly been donating for the past fifteen (15) years school uniforms, shoes, school bags,stationeries and other basic tools required by the students. About 100 under privileged children mainly from Kulim,Kedah, Nibong Tebal, Sungai Bakap, Bagan Ajam, Seberang Perai, Balik Pulau and George Town were fortunate and had received the above stated uniforms, tools and equipment. Parallel to the increase in the cost of living, prices of school uniforms including shoes and bags, school bus, canteen food have accelerated sharply, setting the parents in fear and worry how to meet the children’s need to equip themselves and be ready to attend school. Similarly the school bus fares are also increasing , leading to many parents to refrain from sending children to school.
PHA urges the Federal Government and the State Government to stop the School Bus Association from increasing the bus fares any further. Alternatively PHA is appealing that the Government should subsidize the lower income group or provide free bus transport from homes to schools and vice versa. After all currently free bus transports are provided to the tourists. Similarly the Government can with ease provide free shuttle school bus services for school children to go and return from school. Such services will reduce the burden of single mothers and the under privileged families.
PHA is opinion that the only solution that is possible is for the Federal Government to step in and subsidize the lower income group or better still provide free transport from home to school and vise versa as well as issue coupons for these under privileged children to buy uniforms at a discounted price. Finally, PHA would like to thank Maybank, Sivam Catering, Jaya Catering, Entrico Tea on Wheels, Ee-Lian Enterprice, 99 Optics, Great Hearing Care, and all the generous donors and philanthropist in making our project a great success through their kind donations for the purchases of the school uniforms and materials as well as for the medical check ups and purchase of spectacles. P.Murugiah Deputy President Penang Hindu Association
Source: World Hindu News (WHN)