GIS – 16 November 2018: Domestic violence is a serious social evil, affecting all spheres of the society and cuts across race, religion and ethnicity. There should be a collective effort on the part of the population, the public and private sectors, and the NGOs to combat this social evil and help in reducing the prevailing rate of domestic violence in the country.
The Vice-Prime Minister, Minister of Local Government and Outer Islands, Minister of Gender Equality, Child Development and Family Welfare, Mrs Fazila Jeewa-Daureeawoo made this statement, yesterday, in the context of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, observed on 25 November, at a press conference held at Le Labourdonnais Waterfront Hotel, Port Louis.
She pointed that the issue of domestic violence should be of national concern given that the rate of domestic violence is increasing alarmingly. She underlined that among the victims of domestic violence, 90% are women adding that for the year 2017 some 316 persons received protection orders, and from January 2018 to date the number is estimated at 176.
Mrs Jeewa-Daureeawoo urged all victims of domestic violence to come forward and speak out. She also stressed that the victims should not feel ashamed but on the other hand, it is the offenders and perpetrators who should be remorseful of their actions.
Government, she stated, has put in place several programmes to provide victims of domestic violence with a comprehensive and integrated service. They include: Women’s Economic Empowerment, Victim Empowerment and Abuser Rehabilitation Policy, Premarital Counselling and Marriage Enrichment Programme, Integrated Support Service, and Perpetrators’ Rehabilitation Programme. The Hotline 139 which is toll free and operational on a 24-hour basis has also been put in place so that the public could report cases of domestic violence, she added.
Moreover, the Vice-Prime Minister announced that Government will soon set up an Integrated Support Centre, which will allow victims of domestic violence to benefit from an immediate, consistent, coordinated and timely support and counselling as well as provide them with opportunities to become economically independent and self-sufficient.
Furthermore, she spoke of the role of families and the need for families to bring about a change in mindset by giving the same equal treatment, education and facilities to both the female and male child. She made an appeal to every family to inculcate the right values, namely tolerance, respect, perseverance and humility in their children from childhood itself so as to help address the issue of gender equality.
Mrs Jeewa-Daureeawoo also called on men to actively participate in these programmes and to help combat domestic violence, while highlighting that the ‘Man as Caring Partners Programme’ was launched in October 2017 as a way to reach out to them and help them to better understand responsibilities in the family.
International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women 2018
A series of activities will be organised by the Ministry of Gender Equality, Child Development and Family Welfare to mark the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women 2018. They include an official ceremony on the 25 November at Octave Wiehé, Réduit; the launching of pamphlets on pre-marital counselling and Marriage Enrichment programme; talks and media campaigns; and sensitisation campaigns in the different Social Centres across the island.
Government Information Service, Prime Minister’s Office, Level 6, New Government Centre, Port Louis, Mauritius. Email: email@example.com Website: http://gis.govmu.org