Kingston, 20 October 2023 (JIS) - The Bureau of Gender Affairs is willing to arrange ‘No Excuse for Abuse’ Community Chats in areas that are experiencing various forms of domestic violence.
This activity, which involves talks with residents, is a part of the BGA’s ‘No Excuse For Abuse’ public education campaign to end the violence.
Persons who are experiencing or know of violent relationships can contact the BGA’s ‘No Excuse For Abuse’ helpline or text at 876-553-0372 (Female) or 876-533-0387 (Male).
Acting Director of the Community Liaison Unit, Nardia McLaren, told JIS News that residents can call the Bureau to arrange sessions on different forms of gender-based violence.
“Feel free to call the Bureau of Gender Affairs and we will coordinate and have our community walk-through and our ‘No Excuse for Abuse’ programme in your community,” she said, noting that the programme is held in collaboration with the Police, the Victim Services Division of the Child Protection and Family Services Agency and other social agencies.
Additionally, she noted that communities are selected for walk-throughs based on statistics which show a high level of violence.
Miss McLaren said that during these visits, the BGA will share information on domestic violence, such as “what to do, where to go, what are the signs, how can we help, how the service providers help, how you as a victim… as a community member can help in reducing these forms of abuse.”
Meanwhile, Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Hon. Olivia Grange, in response to the recent deaths of women and children, has called on Jamaicans to end the violence and to use non-violent means of resolving their conflicts.
In a statement released earlier this week, the Minister said despite various legislation, policies and programmes, “violence is still a challenging reality for too many of our sisters.”
“We can establish shelters, which we have done. We can establish domestic violence intervention centres at police stations, which we have done. We can establish helplines, which we have done.
We can introduce and amend legislation, which we have done and will continue to do,” she noted.
“However, these measures alone will not get the desired outcomes. We need all hands on deck now to end the violence,” the Minister emphasised.
Miss Grange said that Jamaicans must normalise the use of non-violent means of resolving conflicts.
“We must cultivate a new culture that is intolerant of all forms of violence in our homes, in our institutions, in our workplaces, in our communities… everywhere,” she added.