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Gender Affairs condemns the increasing incidents of violence

Gender Affairs condemns the increasing incidents of violence
Rodesha Bailey (deceased)

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The Gender Affairs Division has condemned gender-based violence, especially the increasing incidences of violence against women and children in public and private spheres.

La Fleur Quammie-Harry, acting coordinator of the Gender Affairs Division in a release issued Wednesday said the division stands in solidarity with the National Commission on Gender-Based Violence.

Strongly condemning the recent violence against Rodisha Bailey of Sayers, Mesopotamia, and Shania Johnson of Biabou, two young women who were recently killed, the release said “amongst other brutal murders that have been taking place across the country lately. The culture of violence must never be condoned!”

Johnson, an 18-year-old teacher with the YES program was reported missing on Saturday November 3 after she did not return home from a trip to Kingstown last week Friday. The following day, at about 6:50am, her lifeless body was discovered along the roadside in Akers. A police report said the result of a post-mortem carried out on her body is consistent with that of a homicide.

On October 26, Rodesha Roshell Bailey, 30 years, was found lying dead, with multiple stab wounds about her person, in the Sayers area of Marriaqua in the wee hours of the morning. Desron Robers, a labourer of the Cane End appeared before the Serious Offences Court on November 5, charged with Bailey’s murder.

“Although the Government of St Vincent and the Grenadines has taken measures to develop laws, policies and programmes to respond to gender-based violence, it remains one of the most prevalent human-rights violations in St Vincent and the Grenadines. Women and girls continue to experience domestic violence, brutal murder, rape and unwanted sexual remarks, ridicule, harassment, and assault in public. Violence against women harms families and communities across generations and reinforces other forms of violence prevalent in society. Violence also carries tremendous costs, from greater health care, legal expenses and losses in productivity that impacts the national budget, and overall development.

“The Gender Affairs Division urges all stakeholders to strengthen efforts towards the prevention of violence in all spheres of society. We also urge all stakeholders to strengthen the productivity of women and children through the law and other policies. Effective prosecution of perpetrators is an important deterrent that must be reinforced. Strengthened provision of comprehensive services for survivors of violence in order to support their recovery remains urgent. This requires new and innovative measures including male involvement. With encouragement, men can challenge the deeply rooted inequalities and social norms that perpetuate men’s control and power over women that reinforce violence against women and children.

“As we approach the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women that is commemorated on November 25 annually, and the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence from November 25 – December 10, 2018, I urge all Vincentians to promote a zero tolerance of violence against women and girls, and call for the elimination of all forms of gender-based violence in all spheres of society,” the release from Quammie-Harry said.

Please report all cases of gender-based violence and violence against women to the: Gender Affairs Division- 784-453-2061; Royal SVG Police Force – 784-457-1211; Family Court – 784-451-2477

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