Minister of State in the Office of the Prime Minister Ayanna Webster-Roy says Government is rolling out programmes and initiatives to help women, children, and men too.
She was speaking to reporters during the annual women’s rights rally and march at the Queen’s Park Savannah, Port-of-Spain, Saturday, where T&T will join the world in commemorating International Women’s Day, Sunday.
Webster-Roy said "While women in T&T are advancing and shattering glass ceilings and entering different domains, I'm still troubled by the fact that our women continue to be victims of very violent crime.
"We've tried to address it through legislation and programming however, at the root of it is a basic understanding that we need to live in a society that respects rights that gender-based violence is sometimes hinged on.
"As a government, we have established homes now, domestic violence shelters that we're going to commission soon, to cater to women with their children and shelters for men as well.
"We will be rolling out a programme for self-defence for women through the UN Foundations programme that has been reaching out to young people between the ages of 12 to18."
She said additionally, government agencies had been using different means of reaching out to communities to engage the citizenry, such as using plays like "Shades of I-She: Every Woman's Story" exposing the community and residents to issues such as gender-based violence, incest, rape, and child abuse.
Webster-Roy said by doing this it elicited discussion and helping communities in meaningful ways to solve these issues.
She said Government was also currently looking at amending the Domestic Violence Act, a draft addressing sexual harassment will be going out for public comment as well.
Webster-Roy said even though the Government changed the laws, put programmes in place and opened more shelters, until Trinbagonians became more responsible and accountable, all their efforts will come to naught.
Finance Minister Colm Imbert announced in his 2020 Budget presentation the establishment of shelters for homeless women who are victims of domestic violence, family conflict, and crime. The shelters will be provided by the Housing Development Corporation in partnership with the private sector.
Deputy Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Sport and Youth Affairs Claire Davidson-Williams said an initiative called Pink Reign was launched that promoted girls and women in sport.
She said the ministry wanted to get more women who would not usually be involved in road racing or to work with national governing bodies and honouring four women in sport each week.
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