The United National Congress notes the ongoing national conversation regarding violence against women, in particular, domestic violence.
We note that one of our members has spoken on this issue, expressing his personal opinion on it.
The UNC encourages all citizens to share their views and concerns on issues of national importance, and individuals and members of our party are entitled to express their own opinions.
However, it is important to note that the views of one member do not represent the party’s position. In this case, the assertion that soca music is a factor or cause of domestic violence is one that the party does not hold.
Gender-Based Violence is a pressing issue that requires careful consideration and input from many stakeholders, as it has an impact on national development.
The UNC recognizes the seriousness of this matter and has sought to bring it to the forefront for discussion in the Parliament, as reflected in our recent motion calling on the Government to strengthen the legislative and physical protection of women in our society.
As a society, we must do more to protect our girls and women.
We must stand in support of the women who are bravely speaking out against their attackers, and for those who cannot, or who may be reluctant to speak out. We must be their voices and demand action.
Our political leader, the Hon Kamla Persad-Bissessar, SC, MP, has stated that one of the priorities of a new UNC Government will be to immediately bring legislation to replace the Domestic Violence Act with new, modern, comprehensive legislation that will provide unique powers to the Courts to grant effective remedies what will bring real relief to victims of domestic violence.
These laws will also equip law enforcement with the necessary powers to deal with all manner of situations and for the first time in the Commonwealth Caribbean, we will be enacting laws that will be aimed at the rehabilitation of offenders of domestic violence and the rebuilding of the family unit.
We note the announcement by the Commissioner of Police that a new Gender-Based Violence Unit will soon be operational, and we commend Commissioner Griffith for this initiative.
The UNC reiterates that the issue of Gender-Based Violence is one of national importance, and we call on all citizens to work together and be your sisters’ and brothers’ keepers.