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Hardap police against violence and alcohol abuse

One of the facilitators, Sergeant, Karl Brandt speaking to participants at the workshop in Mariental. (Photograph by David Adetona)In efforts to counter the culture of gender based violence and alcohol abuse, the Hardap regional police recently organised a workshop in Mariental to build capacity on effective law enforcement in response to the ever- increasing violence against women and excessive alcohol abuse in the region.
Opening the workshop, the Hardap region deputy commissioner, Johanna Situde said the importance of intervention on gender based violence and alcohol abuse cannot be overemphasized.
“Gender based violence and alcohol abuse has short and long term health effects on our communities and needs to be addressed by educating ourselves and the communities we serve. We need to take aggressive steps in the form of proactive policing as these are the type of crimes that are either not reported or under reported,” Situde said.
She pointed out that it is imperative that the law enforcement agents and relevant stakeholders are well trained in order to have positive and professional approaches towards members of the public especially the way they handle survivors of gender based violence or alcoholism.
She further said that the police in the region need to be in constant contact with each other through this kind of workshop to ensure that the public receive the best services.
“Therefore, the objectives of the workshop are to provide a common set of principles for participants in improving their understanding on the differential impact of gender based violence and alcoholism in our region. To help the participants to recognise how this pain in the neck issues influence people’s attitude and manner in relation to their health and well-being.
“The workshop will pay attention to knowledge and understanding on how harmful gender norms perpetuate the incidence of gender based violence and alcoholism, as well as how gender transformative approaches are necessary to reduce the spread, impact and acceptability of gender based violence and alcoholism,” she stressed.
Furthermore, the workshop highlighted ideas, concepts, policies, approaches and strategies for a greater involvement and engagement of police officers to reduce or eliminate gender based violence and alcohol abuse.
Participants were introduced to legislation and law enforcement systems on gender based violence and alcohol abuse, procedures for handling acts of violence, victim safety, response protocol, police officer responsibilities and understanding of gender based violence and alcohol abuse.
Participants said the workshop was inspiring as they had learned so much in one week. The workshop was organised by the women’s network of the Hardap regional police.

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