KUALA LUMPUR: A proposal to evaluate the mental state of prospective candidates seeking to join the police force will be taken up for consideration, says Jonathan Yasin.
"It's a good proposal which is relevant and important
"We will bring it up for discussions by the ministry," the Deputy Home Minister II said when replying to a question raised by Ramli Mohd Nor (BN-Cameron Highlands) in the Dewan Rakyat on Wednesday (Sept 22).
Ramli, a former senior police officer, asked if prior mental evaluation would be done for those applying to join the police force.
"As far as I know, in my 34 years in the police force, no prior mental evaluation was carried out on candidates.
"It's a very pertinent and important step," the Umno MP said when raising the issue.
Earlier, Jonathan informed lawmakers that a study relating to mental health of police personnel was carried out in 2019.
The study, he said, was used as reference to draft preventive measures including improving existing standard operating procedure to deal with mental health issues affecting police personnel.
He added that a directive was also issued in February last year to department heads and officers to be more aware of those under them who show signs of mental stress or depression.
"Non-police personnel have also been roped in to provide counselling to personnel facing mental health issues," he said.
Other measures taken included the implementation of a buddy system programme at all police contingents including districts and police stations, said Jonathan.
"Those participating in the programme play a role in identifying personnel among their ranks who are suffering from mental health issues. This allows for early preventive measures to be taken."