The public can contact respective authorities to address issues related to mental health, abuse and price hike, among others
By HARIZAH KAMEL / Pic By HUSSEIN SHAHARUDDIN
THERE are many hotlines in Malaysia, as well as online therapy platforms that are available during the Movement Control Order (MCO) to assist the general public.
Besides addressing questions related to Covid-19 and the MCO, people can also contact the respective authorities to address issues related to mental health, abuse, price hike, businesses, safety and aid.
Psychological First Aid Hotline
Recently, the Health Ministry (MoH) reported that it received 2,459 phone calls and over 1,000 WhatsApp messages between March 28 and April 12 through its Psychological First Aid hotline.
DG of Health Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said the services through calls and messages are for emotional, psychological and counselling support to cope with the current MCO, which has been extended to Phase 3.
The free mental health hotline is a partnership between MoH’s Crisis Preparedness and Response Centre and volunteer relief organisation Malaysian Medical Relief Society to provide emotional support for those who are in need of it during the MCO.
The hotline operates from 9am until 5pm daily at 03-2935 9935.
The helpline has been receiving a surge of calls at 1,893 — following the implementation of the MCO — on children and victims of domestic abuse.
The hotline is set up as part of the Women, Family and Community Development Ministry’s initiative in providing psychological support to those affected by the MCO.
To support counselling services, Datuk Seri Rina Mohd Harun said 528 counsellors under the Board of Counsellors of Malaysia and the Welfare Department from across the country are involved in the tele-counselling service line.
The public can contact the Talian Kasih hotline at 15999 or WhatsApp 019-2615999, available 24 hours every day.
Offering confidential emotional support 24 hours a day, the service that Befrienders provide is called befriending.
Befrienders Kuala Lumpur (KL) reaches out particularly to groups at high risk of suicide and giving emotional support to them to improve their psychological health and wellbeing.
They have recently added a temporary hotline at 03-7627 2929 with the support of MT Microtel Technology Sdn Bhd. For a full list of numbers and operating hours of offices nationwide, go to befrienders.org.my/centre-in-malaysia.
Women’s Aid Organisation Hotline
The Women’s Aid Organisation (WAO) said it observed a 44% increase in WAO hotline calls and WhatsApp inquiries between February and March this year.
With the rise in numbers of domestic violence during the MCO, WAO urged domestic abused survivors to call the 24-hour WAO hotline at 03-7956 3488.
AswearenowinthePhase3of the MCO, Senior Minister (Security Cluster) Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said the government will impose price controls on selected essential items.
For consumers who have questions on prices of items or want to report on suspicious price hikes, they can reach the Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry (KPDNHEP) hotline at 1-800-886-800.
They can also go on www.kpdn-hep.gov.my/en/hubungi-kami/hotline for the full list of state office numbers and operating hours.
The Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) is essential in informing industry players and businesses if they are allowed to operate throughout the MCO according to their respective sectors.
Businesses can directly contact MITI via its hotline at 012-607 2750 for any queries on the exemption process if they are unable to reach MITI through its website.
The National Security Council (MKN) is a significant authority for the general public to address questions and complaints on issues related to the MCO and the Covid-19 outbreak.
For those who want more information on the pandemic and the MCO, they can always reach the MKN’s helpline at 03-8888 2010.
While the Employees Provident Fund (EPF) has its online facility for i-Lestari, members who applied for the RM500 monthly withdrawal can also contact EPF through the i-Lestari hotline at 03-8922 4848 daily from 8am to 6pm.