The proposed restructuring of the Social Welfare Department will be submitted to the Public Service Department (PSD) no later than this year, said Women, Family and Community Development Minister Datuk Seri Rina Mohd Harun.

She said that the restructuring involved the state, district offices and institutions under the management of the department, aimed at empowering agencies under the Ministry of Women, Family and Community Development.

"This proposal also aims to reduce the workload and staffing requirements.

"Therefore, the ministry is committed to providing the best service to the target group in line with social change and the challenges of a dynamic society," she said when winding up the debate on the motion of thanks for the Yang di-Pertuan Agong's royal address at the Dewan Rakyat today.

Commenting further, Rina said that the ministry would also submit an application for the provision of special allowances to service scheme officers after taking into account their workload as well as the role of the officers involved in carrying out their duties.

She also said that among the positions involved are community development assistant, community development officer assistant and community development officer.

Touching on the issue of child protection and rehabilitation, she said that her ministry is now in the process of increasing the number of child protectors so that an increase in effectiveness in dealing with child protection cases can be achieved.

According to Rina, the ministry also received a proposal to set up a Child Development Department through a series of meetings and workshops.

"The Welfare Department plays a role as an agency providing protection and rehabilitation services to children from all aspects including abuse, torture, discrimination, exploitation and criminal misconduct," she said.

In replying to an interjection by Kasthuriraani Patto (PH-Batu Kawan) who claimed that Talian Kasih line 15999 ceased to operate for two weeks, from March 18 to 31, Rina refuted the claim and said that the line operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week during the Movement Control Order (MCO).

"That claim is not true, in fact we (ministry) always ensure that Talian Kasih 15999 is open and I have the statistics on the number of calls received before and during MCO. For example, in April we received 20,305 calls compared to 4,000 calls before MCO," said Rina.