Domestic violence in PNG – change in thinking needed

A Catholic priest in Papua New Guinea who teaches anger management says changing the way people think is one of the keys to overcoming the pervasive levels of domestic violence in the country.

Father Philip Gibbs says law changes are one thing but implementation is another given that the police force is really stretched.

“And also many of the police are not really trained or don’t really have an attitude that’s conducive to peaceful solutions to problems. They can come in pretty strongly and pretty hard sometimes and can get rather violent themselves. So it is more a matter of how to influence the way people are going to think and that comes into the sort of work I do for instance in terms of anger management.”

A United Nations independent expert has called on Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands to reinforce mechanisms that protect women against violence and provide victims of gender inequality and discrimination access to justice.

‘Accountability, rather than impunity, should become the norm for all acts of violence against women,’ UN Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences, Rashida Manjoo said this week in a report on Papua New Guinea after finishing her fact-finding mission in the Pacific country yesterday.

‘The responsibility to prevent violence, protect against violence, provide remedies for victims, and to punish perpetrators for all acts of violence against women, is primarily an obligation of the State.’


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News category: Asia Pacific.

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