The Government has launched a 10-year National Strategic Action Plan to eliminate Gender-Based Violence (NSAP-GBV).
The Plan focuses on five strategic priority areas – prevention, protection, intervention, legal procedures and protocols for data collection.
It takes into account the sociocultural background; specific needs of the victims, survivors and witnesses of violence; and the human and financial resources available to ensure sustainability and alignment with the 2030 Vision National Development Plan, National Policy for Gender Equality, and the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
Speaking at the launch of the Plan at the Jamaica Conference Centre in downtown Kingston today (December 6), Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Hon. Olivia Grange, said the Government continues to take a collaborative approach to tackle violence against women.
She pointed out that earlier this year, the public was invited to make submissions to the Joint Select Committee of Parliament, adding that recommendations were made regarding proposed amendments to the Domestic Violence Act, Sexual Offences Act, Offences Against the Person Act and the Child Care and Protection Act.
“The Committee is set to reconvene shortly to review the recommendations and arrive at consensus regarding the way forward,” she said.
Representative, UN Women Multi-Country Office Caribbean, Alison McLean, said Jamaica joins five other Caribbean countries and many countries across the globe that have taken this significant step and public commitment towards addressing gender-based violence.
The other Caribbean countries are the Commonwealth of The Bahamas, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Belize, Antigua and Barbuda, and Grenada.
She said national strategic action plans represent the most comprehensive approach to addressing GBV, as they are multisectoral and support a focus on the core areas of GBV programming, prevention and response.
“Gender-based violence, and its most prevalent form – violence against women, is not inevitable, and we know what works in terms of prevention and response. The National Strategic Action Plan developed by the Government of Jamaica follows a globally recognised due-diligence framework,” she said.
One of the most pervasive forms of gender-based violence is violence against women and girls. It takes the form of physical, psychological, economic and sexual abuse. These include trafficking in persons, forced prostitution, sexual exploitation, rape and sexual harassment.
The Plan was launched in collaboration with the Bureau of Gender Affairs – a division within the Ministry, and the High Commission of Canada.