The focus of ending violence against women was spotlighted yesterday morning. The Bureau of Gender Affairs in the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment & Sport in partnership with the High Commission of Canada partnered for the sole purpose of eliminating this world wide problem. By the same token, the organizations put on a symposium titled the National Strategic Action Plan (NSAP) To Eliminate Gender-Based Violence. Correspondingly, the symposium was in observation of the international day for the elimination of violence against women #IDEVAW.
The theme of the symposium was “Leave No One Behind – End Violence against Women and Girls.” Held at the Jamaica Conference Centre, the conference drew a passionate audience looking to add their support for this much needed effort. Accordingly, the symposium was chaired by one of Jamaica’s finest media practitioners Mr. Dervan Malcolm.
Strategy to end Gender-Based Violence
One of the objectives, which Good News Jamaica believes is the most important was to “obtain commitments from key stakeholders for the implementation of the NSAP”. Mr. Malcolm pointed out just how important women are in our society by naming some of the powerful women helping to lead our country. Hence, he also pointed out the influences in our homes in the form of our mothers and wifes.
As pointed out by the Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Hon. Olivia Grange, “Jamaica is a signatory to regional and international human rights instruments which prohibit gender-based violence. Some of the instruments include the convention of the elimination of all forms of discrimination against women, The convention of the rights of the child, The convention of the rights of persons with disabilities…, among others.”
As seen as a critical day in Jamaica, the launch of the strategic action plan is a positive effort needed to command and coach a cultural change. The Canadian High Commission has dedicated a global fund of 150 million Canadian dollars to the Women’s Voice and Leadership Programme. As a result, the Caribbean Region will now have access to these funds. The fund is meant to help at the community level to thwart the issues of Violence against women and girls.
Collectively people in Jamaica have created more shelters for women who need a safe place away from violence. An example of this is the foundation started by Simone Edwards called Simone4Children.
The Jamaican government took the opportunity to express their zero tolerance approach to all forms of violence and is committed to implementing measures to combat gender-based and other forms of violence in Jamaica. In like manner, the High Commission of Canada support the cause of gender equality, the empowerment of women and girls and the promotion and protection of their human rights.
The Impact of Strategy
The Jamaican government believes that Gender-based violence is a complex and cross-cutting issue which requires sustained and intensive efforts at multi-dimensional levels to address the issue in a holistic manner. They are determined to take the normalcy out of abusing another human being and make culturally unacceptable.
As stated in a release by the government, “The NSAP provides for an integrated, multi-sectoral and structural approach to addressing the key issues and challenges of GBV, as it relates to victims, perpetrators, and witnesses of acts of violence. The NSAP acknowledges the need to incorporate a socially inclusive, human rights-centred, diverse approach to tackling this endemic problem, and it leverages linkages and synergies with national policies and programmes.”
The symposium was a refreshing reminder and representation of the Jamaican population wanting to tackle and put an end to Gender-based violence.
To get more information on the National Strategic Action Plan – Gender-based Violence please visit their Facebook page.