Global Part­ner­ship to as­sist Ja end vi­o­lence against chil­dren

Jamaica Gleaner - - NEWS - Jodi-Ann Gilpin Gleaner Writer jodi-ann.gilpin@glean­erjm.com

DEEP-ROOTED so­cial is­sues that con­tinue to plague the so­ci­ety, in ad­di­tion to hor­rific in­ci­dents of vi­o­lence against chil­dren, are among sev­eral prob­lems Prime Min­is­ter An­drew Hol­ness ex­pects to be ad­dressed fol­low­ing yes­ter­day’s launch of the Global Part­ner­ship to end vi­o­lence among youth.

Hol­ness in­di­cated that on­go­ing cul­tural prac­tices such as cor­po­ral pun­ish­ment are part of a va­ri­ety of fac­tors that have con­trib­uted to is­sues of abuse, which many chil­dren en­counter on a daily ba­sis.

“Vi­o­lence has be­come nor­malised in so­ci­ety. Un­for­tu­nately, it is part of our so­cial in­ter­ac­tion,” he said while ad­dress­ing an au­di­ence at the Of­fice of the Prime Min­is­ter in St An­drew.

COR­PO­RAL PUN­ISH­MENT

“Amaz­ingly, when I was at the Min­istry of Ed­u­ca­tion, I took it unto my­self to ad­dress the is­sue of cor­po­ral pun­ish­ment and there were some par­ents in Ja­maica who felt of­fended by this,” added Hol­ness, who has pre­vi­ously served as min­is­ter of ed­u­ca­tion.

“There were some teach­ers who thought that I was try­ing to take from them the tool that they re­lied on for so long to main­tain or­der in their classroom, and there are many Ja­maicans who think like that. Not to men­tion those moth­ers who close their eyes to the abuse of their daugh­ters by men who they know but rely on them for eco­nomic cir­cum­stances.”

Mak­ing ref­er­ence to a report re­leased this week by Amnesty In­ter­na­tional, which high­lights

Vi­o­lence has be­come nor­malised in so­ci­ety. Un­for­tu­nately, it is part of our so­cial in­ter­ac­tion.

fears that cit­i­zens ex­pe­ri­ence in their in­ter­ac­tion with the po­lice force, the prime min­is­ter stressed that there has to be a level of ur­gency from all stake­hold­ers to deal with vi­o­lent in­ci­dents.

“The chal­lenge we face in grow­ing our econ­omy is not sim­ply an eco­nomic prob­lem.

We have some deep-seated so­cial is­sues which act as a con­straint. We have to con­front it. The use of vi­o­lence in our so­ci­ety has to go,” he said.

“We are not go­ing to in any way change the course that they (hu­man rights watch­dogs) are on in terms of the main­te­nance of hu­man rights. Though crime is a chal­lenge, our re­sponse will not be with more vi­o­lence. Law and or­der, de­cency, and re­spect for our cit­i­zens will over­come crim­i­nal­ity,” he de­clared.

IAN ALLEN/PHO­TOG­RA­PHER

Olivia Grange (left), min­is­ter of cul­ture, gen­der, en­ter­tain­ment and sports, speaks about gen­der af­fairs with Pub­lic De­fender Ar­lene Har­ri­son Henry (cen­tre) and Ali­son McLean, per­ma­nent sec­re­tary in the Min­istry of Cul­ture, Gen­der, En­ter­tain­ment and Sports, dur­ing yes­ter­day’s launch of the Global Part­ner­ship to End Vi­o­lence Against Chil­dren, held at the Of­fice of the Prime Min­is­ter in St An­drew.

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