GIS – 27 November 2013: The Minister of Gender Equality, Child Development and Family Welfare, Mrs Mireille Martin, called on public officers to rise up as one voice against gender-based violence and join the chain of solidarity and action to step up concrete outcomes in the fight against violence.
The Minister was addressing members of the Government Services Employees Association (GSEA) gathered this morning at Unity House, Beau-Bassin, for the launching of a capacity-building programme to end gender-based violence.
The Minister of Gender Equality, Child Development and Family Welfare commended GSEA and its members for being the first trade union in Mauritius to join efforts with the ministry to end gender-based violence. Recalling the negative impact of violence not only on the victim’s health and family but also on productivity and the economy, Mrs Martin stated that it is imperative for witnesses of gender-based violence to know the resources and provide support to help victim of domestic violence turn to the right institution as well as use their voice to stop this harmful act.
Mrs Martin also highlighted the two-pronged approach to curb domestic violence namely that of encouraging and supporting victims of domestic violence to come forward and denounce cases of violence, and directing perpetrators to relevant institutions to break the cycle of violence. According to the Minister, more men should be encouraged to speak out against domestic violence and become role model by condemning any form of disrespect, violence and abuse against women as well as advocating non-violent ways of addressing conflict. Engaging men as partners to address the issue of domestic violence is a prerequisite to end such violence, she said
For his part, the General President of the GSEA, Mr Radhakrishna Sadien, spoke of domestic violence as depriving women of Human Rights fundamentals. Underlining the negative effects of violence at work on one’s physical, psychological and moral, Mr Sadien said that solidarity and quality service by public officials during such cases are key elements in supporting victims. He pleaded for more commitment to advance gender equality and fight against any form of discrimination and violence against women.
The capacity-building programme to end gender-based violence is an initiative of the ministry of Gender Equality, Child Development and Family Welfare. It contributes in sensitising different stakeholders including Government agencies, Non Governmental Organisations, private sector, trade unions and socio-cultural/ religious bodies on the issue of gender-violence. It also aims at providing information, tools and techniques to better assist victims of gender-based violence and providing guidance on gender awareness vis-à-vis gender based violence.
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