Grange wants persons who abuse women to face the music
Olivia Grange said that Jamaicans should be prepared to give evidence in court against persons who are abuse women.
"It is one thing for us to have harsh penalties for gender violence, but to punish the perpetrators we need convictions — and that requires people speaking up," Grange said in a media statement on the weekend.
The minister, who has responsibility for gender affairs, said governmental action is vital to prevent and end gender violence. She said too that success is also dependent on people taking a stand and using the mechanisms in place, and those to be implemented to deal with the problem.
Data released by the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) show that since the start of this year, 24 women have been killed in domestic disputes. Many of these killings have taken place in recent weeks.
"The violence usually starts with hitting. And someone — a member of the family, a neighbour, a friend, a co-worker — usually knows about it," Grange said.
"I continue to urge everyone to stop turning a blind eye to the gender violence that they know is happening. Each of us has a part to play in ending gender violence. We cannot remain silent. We cannot afford to look the other way. We have a duty as family, neighbour, friend and co-worker to intervene before domestic disputes escalate," Grange said.