Gender violence hinders equality - Mkhize

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Bizana - Correctional Services Deputy Minister Hlengiwe Mkhize has warned that gender violence poses a serious threat to equality and to the broader development of women.

Mkhize was yesterday addressing the launch of the Thuthuzela Care Centre in Bizana in the Eastern Cape themed Ending Violence: Enhancing the Lives of Women and Girls in Rural Communities.

"The nature and extent of the violence experienced is such that it grossly violates women's rights," she said, adding that protection gains violence was a human right.

"Domestic violence, violence against women and children, should be seen as part of a continuum of oppression of the most disempowered in our society."

Thuthuzela Care Centres offer services and support to women and girls who have fallen victim to domestic violence and sexual abuse.

Their services are prosecutor-led, victim-centred and geared to prevent secondary victimisation of victims and/or survivors. To date, 17 Thuthuzela Care Centres have been rolled out.

Mkhize said Thuthuzela Care Centres cannot succeed with services provided by only one group. She said the model needed the mobilisation and commitment of the entire community.

"Our government has taken considerable action to address constitutional and human rights violations against women and the girl-child, by establishing strong partnerships and alliances with civil society, the private sector, donor community and other stakeholders," said Mkhize.