Call to reduce violence in all forms
DPI, GUYANA, Tuesday, October 24, 2017
The Ministry of Public Health remains committed to ensuring the cessation of violence in all forms in the country.
To this end, a three-day training workshop offering train-the-trainer sessions and piloting and implementation of the WHO’s protocol to address sexual violence is being held at the Marriott Hotel, Kingston.
The collaborative effort between the Pan American Health Organization/ World Health Organisation (PAHO/WHO), the Ministry of Public Health and John Hopkinson University aims to provide healthcare workers with the knowledge and skills to understand and address sexual violence as a public health problem.
In brief remarks, Permanent Secretary (PS) attached to Ministry of Public Health, Collette Adam said measures need to be implemented to reduce the cultural and social epidemic of sexual violence. The PS noted that the workshop will help to address this issue as it gives the participants the requisite training, thus enabling them to identify victims of abuse and make better-qualified interventions.
Dr. William Adu-Krow, PAHO/WHO representative, reported that though there are cases of violence against both women and men, studies show that there are fewer cases of violence against men as opposed to women. He noted that violence against women invariably does not better but gets worse, hence it is imperative to emphasize the reduction of violence against women and girls.
According to Dr. Adu-Krow, data suggests that in some countries nearly one in four women experience sexual violence by an intimate partner, while one-third percent of women experienced a forced first sexual encounter.
“Sexual violence has a profound impact on physical and mental health as well causing physical injuries, it is associated with an increased risk of ranged of sexual reproductive health problems with both intermediate and long-term consequences. It has impacted on mental health can be as serious as physical impact and may be long-lasting,” Dr. Adu-Krow explained.
According to the WHO website, over the last decade, intimate partner violence or sexual violence against women has been widely recognised as a public health and human rights problem. Studies in both developing and developed countries indicate between 20 and 67 percent of women globally experience violence in relationships. However, intimate partners violence particularly the abuse of women by their male partners is among the most common and dangerous forms of gender-based violence.
Dr. Adu-Krow also suggested a “No Drop” policy which does not permit the abusee the option to drop or settle the case made against their abuser, but to allows it pass through the court of law.
Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Dr. Shamdeo Persaud observed that the workshop will help to improve the lives of women and is in keeping with the goals of the ministry’s 2020 health vision.
By: Neola Damon