JIS News

Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Hon. Olivia Grange, says Jamaica must renew its commitment to ending domestic abuse as well as using violence as a way to discipline children.

“It’s time we decide as a nation that we will stop beating our pickney. We must end all acts of violence and abuse in our homes, in our communities, and in our country. We have to focus on the homes and the communities because most of the violence against women, girls and boys takes place in the homes,” she noted, during the sitting of the House of Representatives on Tuesday (November 24).

She was speaking against the observance of International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and Girls on Wednesday (November 25) under the theme ‘The Empowered Woman: From Victim to Survivor’.

Ms. Grange, in her address, cited a United Nations report that states that 35 per cent of women worldwide have experienced physical and/or sexual violence.

“This is in keeping with the findings of the local women’s health survey, which found that one in every four women in Jamaica has been slapped, beaten, thumped up with fist, pushed, kicked, attacked with a weapon or threatened with a weapon by her male partner. We also know that the violence doesn’t have to happen. It is not inevitable,” she said.

Ms. Grange pointed out that in countries such as the United States (US), violence against women has declined.

“Domestic violence against adult women went down by 64 per cent between 1993 and 2010,” she said.

She noted that Jamaica has adopted similar measures to those implemented by the US under a 10-year National Strategic Action Plan to end gender-based violence.

Among the actions is the development of a network of shelters for women who need help to leave abusive relationships.

Ms. Grange urged women who need support to call the 24-hour hotline numbers: (876) 553-0372 and (876) 929-2997.

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