Published:Tuesday | February 7, 2017 | 12:00 AMOkoye Henry
Women clad in black yesterday took to the streets of Montego Bay to protest against the recent spate of violence against women and children, who are being killed in increasing numbers in the western city.
The protest was organised by the Central St James Women’s Movement. It saw women and a few men, who came out to support the action, displaying placards with messages such as ‘Real men don’t hurt women’ and ‘Say no to violence against women and children’.
“We want it to be known that we are not going to sit by and allow this violence to continue without saying anything about it,” said Donna Lynch, the president of the movement. “We want our message to be heard loud and clear.”
Government senator and former mayor of Montego Bay, Councillor Charles Sinclair, one of the men who supported the initiative, said he fully endorsed what the women were doing, as he, too, was angry with the general crime situation.
“Many women and children have been murdered viciously in Jamaica from the latter part of last year going into this year,” said Sinclair. “… These people are out here to show support to the grieving families as well as say to the rest of Jamaica that we must take stock of ourselves and bring a halt to this gruesome situation,” he said.
Last year, Sinclair was one of the persons lobbying for a state of emergency in St James during a peak period in the ongoing violence.
However, while the march basically got the thumbs up from many men, there were a few who took exception to the fact that it was primarily focused on violence against women and children.
“This should be a march against violence in general, there should be no segregation, because the stats will show that we have more men being killed than women and children,” said a male onlooker. “What I am seeing on the placards would seem to suggest that it is OK to target men, but spare the lives of women and children.”
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