Civil servants join domestic abuse campaign

Civil servants, including Acting Deputy Governor Stran Bodden, center, and members of the Business and Professional Women’s Club of the Cayman Islands, including president Annie Multon, center right, unite in a stand against domestic abuse Friday at the Government Administration Building.

Civil servants joined with the Business and Professional Women’s Club Friday to make a symbolic stand against domestic violence Friday at the Government Administration Building.

A “Silent Witness” march against domestic violence and bullying was postponed on Friday due to rain, but civil servants took the opportunity to dress in purple to show their support for the club’s stance against domestic abuse. The march was organized by the club.

A press release from the Civil Service pointed out that, according to Royal Cayman Islands Police Service statistics, in 2015 there were 112 incidents of “assault domestic violence;” 13 cases of rape; two attempted rapes; 28 cases of insulting the modesty of a woman and seven cases of defilement.

Business and Professional Women’s Club President Annie Multon told Acting Deputy Governor Stran Bodden and other civil servants, “Domestic violence hurts, it hurts our children and our society in general. We have taken the stand to fight against domestic violence because we have seen too many people suffer, especially women and children who have had to leave their homes and seek shelter with family members or government agencies to protect themselves.”

She said the theme of this year’s campaign is “Peace begins in the home.”

“We have added to that theme with ‘Protect Our Children, Protect Our Future’ to encourage the general public to do their part in our community in the fight against all sorts of abuse, especially where children are involved,” she added. “Regardless of where the abuse occurs, at home or in the schools, we have a duty to protect our future generation by eradicating abuse wherever it may exist.”

Mr. Bodden said he was pleased to do his part in raising awareness. “Domestic abuse is not just a woman’s problem. It is a problem for everybody. We all have to be a part of the solution. We as a community and as individuals need to stand up and get involved,” he said.

The “Silent Witness” march has been rescheduled for Tuesday, Nov. 1. Marchers, carrying red painted cut-out cardboard figures representing past domestic abuse victims, will start from the old government administration building, the Glass House, and march to the steps of the Legislative Assembly in George Town.