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"A LIFE FREE OF VIOLENCE: IT’S OUR RIGHT"

"UNA VIDA SIN VIOLENCIA ES UN DERECHO NUESTRO"

"UMA VIDA SEM VIOLENCIA E UM DIREITO NOSSO               
"UNE VIE SANS VIOLENCE C'EST NOTRE DROIT"


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TRINIDAD & TOBAGO
Full version of document ( PDF file)

Consultants,  Rhoda,Reddock and Rosalie Barclay

National Coverage, both islands.

Prevalence of Violence, Intrafamiliar

Data from the Ministry of National Security reflect the following situation of the murders committed within the country which are related to domestic violence.

Murders Committed Against:

Year Women Children Total

1990     4             3                    7

1991     3             4                    7

1992     12          6                   18

1993     3            12                 15

1994     4             5                     9

1995     10          8                    18

1996     5            1                     6

TOTAL 41         39                 79

Between 1991 and 1994 8,297 applications were made to the Tribunals for the law on restriction of access. In 1996, 378 applications were presented on the law against domestic violence, of which 82% of these applications were on the part of women.

Rape

Data provided by the Rape Crisis Centre in their Annual Report indicates the following for Trinidad between 1994 and 1997:

1994

. Rape by someone known to the victim: 68%

. Rape by a stranger to the victim: 24.4%

. Cases of gang rape: 7.6%

1997

. Rape by someone known to the victim: 45.5%

. Rape by a stranger to the victim: 41.1%

. Cases of gang rape: 13.3%

Child Abuse

Data of child abuse in Tobago in 1993, including the study by Sharpe and Bishop, Situational analysis of children in especially difficult circumstances in Trinidad and Tobago, is as follows:

Nature of the Abuse Number of children Percentage

Neglect 24 17.7%

Physical abuse 20 14.8%

Sexual abuse 16 11.8%

Abandonment 15 11.1%

Emotional abuse 60 44.4%

As well, this report illustrates that in the period between January 1990 and June 1990 in Tobago, 53 cases of sexual abuse were reported, of which 48 were girls and 5 were boys. The ages of the victim range from 2-18 years old.

Other reports for Trinidad show that in 1996 148 children were referred by district courts to the Probation services as a result of child abuse. Of these cases, 68 were boys and 80 were girls. Of this figure, a total of 47.6% were reported for physical abuse, 26.7% for sexual abuse, 15% for neglect and 10.7% for emotional abuse.

Cases of incest reported to the Rape Crisis Centre between 1991 to 1997

1991 22

1993 42

1993 40

1994 40

1995 61

1996 45

1997 55

Legislation

The country refers to the following legislation in relation to the instance of gender violence:

Domestic Violence Act

Sexual Offences Act

State Response

Although there is no common coordinating body which brings together the work on violence against women, the below mentioned ministries do provide services relating to gender violence.

1. Ministry of Culture and Gender Affairs: Domestic Violence Unit

2. Ministry of National Security: Community Policing Unit

3. Ministry of Education: Central Guidance Unit

4. Ministry of Social and Community Development: The Probation Services

5. Ministry of Social Development and Community: National Family Services

Response of Civil Society

Below is a list of NGOs working on the issue of gender violence within the country.

Hope Centre Limited

Mizpeh Half Way House

Our Lady of the Wayside Shelter

Women working for social progress

Men against violence against women

Rap Port National AIDS Programme

Rape Crisis Centre

Families in action

Services

State

1. Ministry of Health: Clinic to support children

2. Ministry of Security: Community Policing Unit – Trinidad, Community Policing Unit – Tobago

3. Ministry of Social Development: Probation Department

4. Ministry of Social Development: National Services of the Family – Counsellors and support groups

5. Ministry of Culture and Gender Affairs Unity of Domestic Violence line of emergency, support groups

Non-governmental

Women working for social progress: orientation, counselling

Samaan Shelter: safe shelter

Families in action: support groups, counselling

Women against violence abuse and violent encounters: support groups

Rape Crisis Society: counselling, group work

Hope Centre: safe shelter for children

Mizpeh Way House: safe shelter for children, support groups


UNDP Against Violence Home Page

For more information, please contact Aparna Mehrotra, Focal Point for Women, Tel: (212)963-6828 Fax: (212) 963-9545, e-mail: mehrotra@un.org

Management and direction: Aparna Mehrotra
Website  design
: Lola Salas
Writing, editing& proofing: Aparna Mehrotra, Dana Burde, Rini Banerjee and Tanaz Pardiwala
Graphic: Joan Miró
(detail) from folder by Isis International

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