BY JOY OFASIA
THE public and the individuals in the Solomon Islands are urged to seek help from the SAFENET’s timely and quality services for survivors of family and domestic violence.
SAFENET Coordinator Women’s Development Division Ministry of Women, Youth, Children, and Family Affairs (MWYCFA) Juliana Zutu urged the public to act and speak out against violence as violence against women and girls is not a private matter but everyone’s responsibility.
“Acts of violence against women and girls must be reported to the police and other relevant authorities. If you are or know someone who is experiencing violence, you can access help by calling or reporting to the police and other relevant authorities.
“The public should be aware of SAFENET and the services it provides to help and support women and girls who have been through domestic violence and also other issues faced by women in the Solomon Islands.
“The important thing is for women and girls to know about the SAFENET service providers and the types of service we provide for domestic violence victims, because with that knowledge women and girls will understand the role of SAFENET and will understand where to reach out to when they face domestic violence,” Zutu added.
SAFENET is a network of government and non-government organizations established to strengthen the referral and coordination of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) services in the country.
If you are or know someone who is experiencing violence, you can access help by calling: Police 999 (emergency) or 22999 (inquiries), Family Support Centre 20619 or 26999, Christian Care Centre 7418842, Social Welfare 20569 or 20686 and Seif Ples 24 hour Hotline 132.
The parties that composed of the Referral SAFENET in the country are Ministry of Health and Medical Services (MHMS) including Health Facilities – Integrated Mental Health Services (IMHS) – Social Welfare Division, Royal Solomon Islands Police Force (RSIPF), Public Solicitor’s Office, Family Support Centre, Christian Care Centre and Ministry of Women, Youth Children and Family Affairs (MWYCFA) and Solomon Islands Planned Parenthood Association (SIPPA).
The Family Protection Act 2014 criminalizes domestic violence provides for the protection of families from domestic violence and to promote safety, health, and wellbeing of victims of domestic violence and for related purposes.
The government through the Ministry of Women, Youth, Children and Family Affairs has taken some positive steps to promote women’s human rights through its implementation of the Gender Equality and Women’s Development Policy 2016 – 2020 and the National Policy on Eliminating Violence against Women and Girls 2016 – 2020.