Working away from home brings its own type of stress to workers that could potentially translate to their demeanour and behaviour at work. And while this strictly falls under professional ethics, it’s a reality that cannot be denied.
However, poor work performance is one thing but becoming abusive and aggressive towards vulnerable clients such as the elderly and young children for that matter, is an entirely different matter to be dealt with altogether. In such cases, professional standards will not only come into play, but the provisions of the law for the protection of these citizens must be upheld, as well.
Foreign Teacher Jailed for Assault on Kindergarten Student
In relation to this, a 56-year old Canadian teacher of English was sentenced to 10 months’ imprisonment after he was found guilty of one of two counts of indecent assault at the Kowloon City Magistrates’ Courts on Thursday, as shared in a report by Asia Times.
Magistrate Amy Chan Wai-mun reproached the defendant, Robert Scott Johnson, noting that his behaviour when he indecently assaulted a kindergarten student was a breach of trust.
Johnson has been accused of molesting two six-year-old girls at a kindergarten in Kowloon’s Cheung Sha Wan in July last year.
The magistrate considered ‘student Y’ to stand witness, as the student explained clearly what had happened to her. The defendant was accused of touching her underpants and her private parts when she was having an afternoon nap in the classroom.
As per another testimony by ‘student X,’ the defendant was accused of touching the inner part of her thigh three times. However, the magistrate found a discrepancy in her statements and ruled the defendant not guilty on the charge related to the statement of X.
Johnson’s lawyer asked for leniency explaining that the defendant had kept a clear record in Hong Kong. He graduated from from a university in Canada and came to Hong Kong in 2001 to teach English. Johnson is married to a Filipina who is in an unstable mental condition. The defendant also relied on credit cards to pay for his daily expenses.
However, Magistrate Wai-mun firmly expressed that the defendant’s conduct be denounced, noting that as an educator, Johnson should have thought about the gravity of his action, especially as he was in charge of handling children, who could barely take care of themselves yet, and that a heavy punishment was called for.