Police officers, social workers and nurses all too often are the frontline professionals who come face to face with victims of domestic abuse.
At a recent three-day domestic violence intervention training seminar, 33 frontline workers from the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service, the Department of Children and Family Services, CAYS Foundation, Health Services Authority, Conference of Seventh-Day Adventist, Northward prison and Red Sails Sports underwent training to become more sensitized to the issue of domestic violence.
During the seminar series, which began on Sept. 5, facilitators Brenda Dawkins of the Family Resource Centre and Cindy Blekaitis of the Employee Assistance Program covered the different types of abuse, new laws relating to domestic abuse, the protection of children and the effect of abuse on the wider society.
“The training, designed to challenge participants to be more aware of the issue of domestic abuse, was the largest the Counselling Services had seen in a long time,” said Ms Blekaitis.
The level of enthusiasm and willingness shown by participants expressed true dedication to the issue of domestic abuse, she added.
The program, which was open to the public, also suggested how the community could work together to move toward a violence-free society, said Robert Lynch, media coordinator for the Cayman Islands Conference of Seventh-Day Adventist.
Police Commissioner David Baines and Miriam Foster, program coordinator of the Resource Centre, handed out certificates to participants, whom they encouraged to stay in touch with each other and to work together to help individuals resolve their differences.
The program, hosted quarterly by the Family Resource Centre, falls under the remit of the Department of Counselling Services.
The Family Resource Centre will host the next three-day training session between Dec. 10 and 12.