New coalition launched to battle child abuse

Holmes is concerned about the rate of child sex cases in Dominica
Holmes is concerned about the rate of child sex cases in Dominica

A number of Non Governmental Organizations (NGO’s) have joined forces to champion the fight against child abuse.

On Wednesday morning, the Dominica NGO Coalition for protection of children and youth in Dominica was officially launched.

Speaking at the launching Chairman of the NGO coalition, Thomas Holmes, explained that the group was formed because of the alarming number of cases of child abuse in Dominica.

“We came about because of so many things happening to our young people and they need protection and guidance. Our children need voices and the NGO Coalition is just one of the voices coming out for them,” he said. “We exist because we realize that over 490 child sexual abuse cases were reported in Dominica between 2009 and 2012.”

Holmes remarked that the predominant type of child sexual abuse in Dominica are incest, exploitative sexual acts between adult men and underage boys with the predominant activities being unlawful carnal knowledge, touching and fondling, oral sex, anal sex and viewing of pornographic material.

He stated further that the coalition will work based on the statistics.

“The coalition felt that this needs to be the turning point where we lead and mobilize a systematic change for all children and youth to be free from violence in Dominica,” he noted. “Our vision statements states to promote a Dominica where children and youth are free from all forms of violence and exploitation.”

According to Holmes the NGO coalition intend to become champions for survivors, protectors of the innocent and seekers of justice, raisers of awareness.

“We will support whatever is existing so we are not thinking of reinventing the will. The issues around child protection in Dominica are too varied and critical to be tackled by one entity. We should all come together to address this and then the bigger the force the greater impact that we will have,” he said.

The who make up the coalition include the Dominica National Council of Women, Caribbean Male Action Network (CARIMAN), Childfund Caribbean, Lifeline Ministries, Love One Teach One Foundation, West Dominica Children’s Federation, East Dominica Children’s Federation, The National Youth Council, Dominica Planned Parenthood Association, AGANAR Program, Dominica Olympic Committee, Dominica Association of Disabled Persons, Caribbean HIV and AIDS Alliance.

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16 Comments

  1. June 23, 2014

    Government must pass a law that makes it mandatory for anyone knowing of or having good reason to suspect a child has been has been or is being abused to report it to the police immediately . Not to do so must carry a severe penalty.

    Parents who accept “hush money” or any kind of out of court settlement should face the full force of this law. This must apply to mothers who know their boyfriend or husband has abused – or is abusing – a child but have not reported him because he is paying the bills. This is pimping the child. Jailing the mother should be an option. It should be reason enough to put the man in jail, and consider removing the child from the home.

    Some nations have these laws. Perhaps Dominica already has. But it requires the passing and enforcing of such laws to convince an intelligent person that a country is serious about sexual child abuse.

    Until the legal machinery is up and running no amount of NGOs, no conferences, seminars, or rallies, speeches, or press releases are going to make any difference. The offenders laugh at the system.

    The ball is in the legislator’s court.

    What is really needed is for the media to start giving the public the best of their investigative journalism by informing the people what the government, police, and judges are doing to respond to the problem. If they are doing nothing let the public know this. The people who pay the salaries of theses people deserve to know how they justify their inaction.

    There are too many complains of allegations going no further than the police filling out the paper work for an official report. This will build up and build up until it explodes into a wave of vigilante “justice”. Then by the next election it will be forgotten unless there are people who care.

    Sincerely, Rev. Donald Hill. International Evangelist.

  2. June 14, 2014

    Sexual child abuse…

    The rapid increase in the number of cases and the long term mental, physical, and social damage call for an all out war on this diabolical evil.

    Not enough could be said in praise of all – paid workers and volunteers – in both government and non-government organizations who have rallied to the defence of the children and the preservation of decency in the nation.

    Sexual child abuse may never be entirely eliminated but the number of cases can be lowered to the place where they are isolated and it is no longer a national problem.

    It will be necessary to do more than trim the branches of this poisonous tree. The root must be dug out. This will require time and the many hands of people with a diversity of skills.

    Until then let the battle continue on the educational and legal fronts, training the children, prosecuting the offenders to the fullest extent of the law, and providing professional counseling for those who have been hurt.

    What needs to be understood is that that sexual child abuse does not exist in a vacuum. In itself it is a symptom of the Godless materialistic age we live in. It is one of he vipers spawned from mankind’s desire to live without the influence of the Word of God in human life.

    This includes but is not limited to:

    Premarital sex resulting in single mothers struggling to support and raise children without the presence of a husband and father in the home.

    The absence of God in the homes where there is no Bible reading and no prayer is offered with the family is gathered around and all are participating.

    Thinking of abortion as a family planning tool and a method of birth control rather than recognizing it as the murder of the unborn. Nothing in the last hundred years has done more to lower the value and preciousness of children in the minds of people than abortion.

    Little or no connection to a Christ centered church with the parents and children attending Sunday School and worship together.

    The consumption of alcohol and or the use of drugs.

    Pornography in homes (or viewed in private) by means of sexually graphic literature, television, videos, DVDs, or the internet which diminishes the respect men should have for other human beings by making them sex objects and inflaming lust which will be vented in whatever direction happens to be the viewer’s particular orientation.

    I don’t think most people realize the relationship between porn and sexual child abuse. Many pedophiles intentionally inflame their lust to the very max by viewing porn before violating a child. I learned this years ago when I was working with a telephone counseling service in Canada. Once in the middle of the night I found myself on the phone talking to a very troubled man who had recently come out of prison after doing time for molesting children. He told me about the big role porn played in the crimes he had committed against children. To quote his exact words, he said, “I would have the trunk of my car filled with pornographic magazines and videos.” He let me know this was standard fare for many child abusers. I asked him how many children he had violated. He said seventeen.

    When the problem of sexual child abuse is seen as a “life problem” instead of only a “sexual problem” then the possibility of lowering the yearly number of cases will be improved. When these contributing factors are dealt with in the lives of the offenders any improvement that is effected in their behavior will have a better change of being a lasting change.

    Sincerely, Rev. Donald Hill. International Evangelist.

  3. Jay
    June 14, 2014

    All that is being said and I am happy that alot of people are tired of this epidemic, but we need changes in the laws too, to make a difference.
    1. The law must change to allow an abuse case to continue even without the cooperation of the parent or underaged victim. Too many parents let the matter die if they get paid.
    2. Poeple who know of these cases should stop gossiping about them and go to the authority when they know or suspect something is going on with a child.
    3. Police officers who admit to having sex with underaged person should not still be employed by the police department; thats a shame. ) Damn shame!!! :cry: :cry:

  4. Big Bannan
    June 12, 2014

    Teachers should never have the liberty to beat children in schools. The British taught us to do so as slaves , but it is ilegal in their own country.

  5. do trust the law
    June 12, 2014

    let any man rape my child, no police will be informed.ill take care of it the go to jail

    • June 16, 2014

      There are many parents (especially fathers) who feel this way because of shabby investigating on the part
      of the police and their failure to bring the accused to court.

      Some men have expressed their resolve to kill or castrate any man who rapes one of their children. I hope it does not come to this. But I am a grandfather with two grand kids I love dearly. I can understand a father deciding enough is enough. It has happened. Do not wait for it to happen again.

      Let the police in Dominica take this bull by the horns and wrestle it to the ground before people decide to help them out.

      I admit I do not know Dominica nor Dominican justice. But I can tell you in Canada a judge would likely side with the defence of a vigilante Dad, and with a trial by jury the prosecution would have a hard time getting a conviction.

      People need to wake up and report possible cases of sexual child abuse. Newspapers must get on board and let the public know when an arrest is made, and when a case is going to court or why it has not.

      Sincerely, Rev. Donald Hill. International Evangelist.

    • June 16, 2014

      There are many parents (especially fathers) who feel this way because of shabby investigating on the part
      of the police and their failure to bring the accused to court.

      Some men have expressed their resolve to kill or castrate any man who rapes one of their children. I hope it does not come to this. But I am a grandfather with two grand kids I love dearly. I can understand a father deciding enough is enough. It has happened. Do not wait for it to happen again.

      Let the police AND the courts in Dominica take this bull by the horns and wrestle it to the ground before people decide to help them out.

      I admit I do not know Dominica nor Dominican justice. But I can tell you in Canada a judge would likely side with the defence of a vigilante Dad, and with a trial by jury the prosecution would have a hard time getting a conviction.

      People need to wake up and report possible cases of sexual child abuse. Newspapers must get on board and let the public know when an arrest is made, and when a case is going to court or why it has not.

      Sincerely, Rev. Donald Hill. International Evangelist.

  6. Abused
    June 12, 2014

    Child abuse does not only begin in the home, it goes on in our school system by teachers who believe they have the power and authority to abuse children in different ways. I can speak for myself, I was physically abused as a child going to Convent Prep by Ms. Bernabe on a regular basis. Many of us were especially by this individual.

  7. Anonymous
    June 12, 2014

    A child who has been verbally abused loses self-esteem and becomes fair fodder for these pedophile predators. Verbal abuse takes many forms and is administered, not only by parents and guardians, but also teachers, peers (eg. bullying) and may even be as subtle as an advertisement which promotes a certain look and size and thus makes a child not possessing these projected traits feel inferior.
    Politicians too, in this silly season, must be careful about name-calling.
    Parents have to be sensitized to permitting their children to dressing provocatively. The parents may say that does not make the perpetrator’s act right, and I agree. But even if the culprit is charged, convicted and jailed, one other youngster is left with emotional and maybe even physical scars that will never, ever heal.
    Let children be children for God’s and their sakes!

  8. There you have it
    June 12, 2014

    All caring adults should speak out on behalf of children. The incidence of abuse is alarming and unacceptable. There should be effective legislation, preventive and penal, to safeguard our young against the unscrupulous and uncaring adults.

  9. Anonymous
    June 12, 2014

    This is a very noble effort on the part of those concerned persons. However they should try quote statistics contextually and the law factually. It is the INCREASE in REPORTED cases of child abuse that has risen dramatically. Thanks to those who remain nameless but who have advocated for years in the wilderness, child abuse has come out of the closet and it is now seen as unacceptable behavior on the part of the perpetrator(s)/predator(s) hence more persons are coming forward to report. Tragically, the state of the current laws and the reaction of the key players (mainly police, welfare, teaching, and medical personnel) has not risen to cope with this avalanche.
    As to the law, the concerned persons must properly acquaint themselves with the current legislation, get a clear understanding of these, so they can make meaningful suggestions re amendments.
    Even more than tourism, curbing the incidence of child abuse is EVERYBODY’S business.
    I wish the coalition absolute success with its mandate. I pray the Holy Spirit gives the members the necessary fortitude, insight and determination to pursue these perpetrators relentlessly. The voices in the wilderness have allies at last!

  10. CYRIL LLONGTING
    June 12, 2014

    “Spare the rod and spoil the child” is CHILD ABUSE! Many parents do not know the difference between DISCIPLINE and PUNISHMENT. Beating a defenseless child is ABUSE, and will come back to haunt the parent who engages in that behavior. End beating now….

  11. Anonymous
    June 11, 2014

    Good move. The stats are alarming. Apply pressure on the policy makers to penalize parents who accept money from the evil doers while the lives of the children are spoiled forever.

    • June 23, 2014

      Government must pass a law that makes it mandatory for anyone knowing of or having good reason to suspect a child has been has been or is being abused to report it to the police immediately . Not to do so must carry a severe penalty.

      Parents who accept “hush money” or any kind of out of court settlement should face the full force of this law. This must apply to mothers who know their boyfriend or husband has abused – or is abusing – a child but have not reported him because he is paying the bills. This is pimping the child. Jailing the mother should be an option. It should be reason enough to put the man in jail, and consider removing the child from the home.

      Some nations have these laws. Perhaps Dominica already has. But it requires the passing and enforcing of such laws to convince an intelligent person that a country is serious about sexual child abuse.

      Until the legal machinery is up and running no amount of NGOs, no conferences, seminars, or rallies, speeches, or press releases are going to make any difference. The offenders laugh at the system.

      The ball is in the legislator’s court.

      What is really needed is for the media to start giving the public the best of their investigative journalism by informing the people what the government, police, and judges are doing to respond to the problem. If they are doing nothing let the public know this. The people who pay the salaries of theses people deserve to know how they justify their inaction.

      There are too many complains of allegations going no further than the police filling out the paper work for an official report. This will build up and build up until it explodes into a wave of vigilante “justice”. Then by the next election it will be forgotten unless there are people who care.

      Sincerely, Rev. Donald Hill. International Evangelist.

  12. Mr. Deligent
    June 11, 2014

    everyone noticed the children have no youth,well overgrown for their age,some even get pregnant while at school. Too late shall be the cry but,better late than never. we say they are the future so it is everybody,s business.” Incest” dam shame

  13. # Dominican.#
    June 11, 2014

    Credit must be given to all those activist, MRS Delia Weeks and her relentless efforts to raise and Educating the public of the epidemic nature of child abuse in our country. It`s only necessary that all stakes holders play our part to deal with this problem A.S.A.P.

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