by Brian Joseph
Sexual violence against our children is a real and everyday danger. Protecting them from the threat of sexual predators is one of our top concerns and fears for both parents and educators.
The most important question is “Who can I trust with my child/children?” because they’re no longer safe anymore. As we send our sons and daughters off to school on a daily basis they too are not safe from male predators.
Even if they’re left with immediate family members, partners or friends they’re still in danger of facing sexual abuse from devious individuals.
Unfortunately, not many of us know the right way or even how to think about addressing such a sensitive topic.
We all have to work hard in riding our communities entirely of this cancer called sexual violence but we need to start somewhere in tackling and underpinning this plague that’s destroying our nation’s children mentally. There’s no better time than the present for us to start being our neighbours’ keepers and start looking out for one another’s children, because if we knowingly suspect or witness something strange or suspicious it’s our moral duty to report it.
I will continue to reiterate that finding solutions to this underlying issue requires collaborative dialogue among all stakeholders, organisations, lawmakers and concerned citizens.
What’s most important is that we must be able to come together collectively as a nation in curbing sexual violence and it must not be done haphazardly.
On Tuesday, 22 October 2019 the Grenada Empowerment Movement held a mild protest and petition signing on Scott Street adjacent to the Child Protection Authority. The petition was seeking to advise the Child Protection Authority (CPA) to champion the wellbeing of our nation’s children because they’ve failed in carrying out their obligations.
The death of Ariel Bhola and others who fell victim to perpetrators should’ve taught us a valuable lesson and therefore we should be putting things in place ensuring that this never happens to anyone again.
I believe a lot of individuals and organisations deserved to be named and shamed for failing our nation’s children.
It was very sad that no one joined the protest and what made it more disgusting is that many Grenadians refused to sign the petition and some of the comments were very outrageous.
Men, in general, were saying they will not sign because we’ll not get anywhere with that petition: men with children and grandchildren. Something is definitely wrong with some of us mentally because this is just sickening.
Imagine women with children, passersby, motorists, police officers, ministers of religion… when some were approached their response was “I cannot sign because of my job or simply I just cannot tell you.”
How ridiculous can this be? To be honest I’m really ashamed of some of our people.
I have to ask myself if we’re only social media “BadJohn” but when it comes to showing intestinal fortitude by lending our real support, our people are reneging on their responsibility in protecting our nation’s children.
Where are we heading and in which direction with those kinds of “it’s not my business” mindset and, if that’s how our people are behaving, I’m really sorry for the future of our children.
I literally had to beg people to sign the petition reminding them it’s all about protecting the future of their children and grandchildren. I’m more convinced it will now be a daunting task ridding society of this cancer.
I would like to express special thanks to Earl Maitland, Rolanda McQueen, Ian Thomas and Brian J.M Joseph for championing the cause against sexual violence. Much appreciation goes out to all patriotic and concerned Grenadians who signed the petition. The entire team is very grateful for your unwavering support and we’re looking forward to many others joining the fight against child sexual abuse.
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