In a stand against domestic abuse, the 16 Days of Activism campaign got under way with its Silent Witness March on Thursday in Grand Cayman.
Marchers, carrying red painted cut-out cardboard figures representing past domestic abuse victims, made their way from the old government administration building, the Glass House, to the steps of the Legislative Assembly in George Town.
The march was organised by the Business and Professional Women’s Club of the Cayman Islands and joined by members of the public, including Cayman Islands Governor Duncan Taylor and his wife, Marie.
The march was followed by a short talk on domestic abuse by guest speaker Johnnetta McSwain-Clay.
She shared her experience as a domestic abuse survivor.
“We have to have a voice for the women and men who don’t have a voice,” she said encouraging others to break the silence on domestic abuse and to teach self love and self worth to others.
Cabinet Minister Mike Adam also took a stance against all violence.
He said this month that the Ministry of Community Affairs, Gender and Housing, for which he oversees, is finalising plans to create a National Committee on Gender and Family Violence.
Once established, he said this national level committee will be composed of a cross section of key stakeholders, which will bring a holistic focus to issues such as gender violence, family violence, child abuse, sexual assault, rape, sexual harassment and stalking.
“Here in Cayman, we cannot ignore the difficult subject of domestic violence and say ‘it doesn’t happen here’ or downplay the numbers or significance of the impact that it has on our families,” Mr. Adam said. “However, in our quest to end domestic violence in our islands, let us not forget that men are also victims of domestic violence. Let us reach out to our men and encourage them to also be a part.”