Let us work together so that our gains are not reversed
March 10, 2020

Let us work together so that our gains are not reversed

THE MURDER of a young mother on the eve of International Women’s Day (IWD), while putting a damper on commemorative activities for the Day, emphasizes why such a day is still very much needed and relevant.

If we only reflect on how far women have come and how much more work there is left to do, we would never let IWD go by unrecognized or without celebration. The gains that women have made — socially and professionally — were not handed to them on a platter. They were fought for; won on the backs of strong, determined women, who must never be forgotten, nor must we let them down by allowing the gains to be reversed.

But sometimes, when the ugly spectre of domestic violence rears its head, we wonder if all the struggle has been in vain. We wonder too about the efficacy of the anti- domestic violence marches and rallies, the workshops, training for front line personnel, and the changes in legislation.

It seems that despite improved access to education, public awareness and a generally better standard of living, some people still view women as chattel — an object to be used, abused and disposed of; ‘something’ devoid of a free will and without the right to life and self determination. Whenever, as a society, we make three steps forward, we sometimes seem to move five paces back.

It is because of these types of atrocities, faced by women in St Vincent and the Grenadines and around the world, why we must carry on the fight. But the battles cannot be won by women only on the front lines, we need the help of our brothers, fathers, grandfathers, sons, cousins, friends, lovers and husbands. We are hopeful that those who perpetuate violence in our homes and communities are in the minority. Could it be that if everyone else works together, and is of one mind, that this awful state of affairs can be turned around?

When a woman, a mother is killed, especially in the presence of loved ones, generations unborn are traumatized and their lives will never be the same. This must end! We must work together, men and women, side by side, so that a solution can be found, leading to a better world for everyone.