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Violence against women on the up

Siteri Sauvakacolo
Sunday, July 27, 2014

CASES of violence against women in Fiji had increased from 297 in 2011 to 382 last year, says Minister for Women Dr Jiko Luveni.

And this increase has been attributed to an increase in reported cases, where women have actively been coming out and reporting the violence inflicted on them.

This was revealed to the women of Nakaya settlement in Kalabu, outside Nasinu during the opening of their new women's centre on Friday.

According to recent police statistics, assault occasioning actual bodily harm rose from 201 in 2011 to 302 last year, common assault decreased from 44 to 28, and indecent assault rose from three to nine cases.

"We have a campaign to eliminate violence against women and children so this has made domestic violence a public health issue," Dr Luveni said.

"This used to be a confidential matter and people were too embarrassed to talk about it, now it has become a public health issue and people who are violated at the moment have the courage to report.

"There have been huge reductions in violence on communities that have been declared violence-free."

Dr Luveni said poverty, disputes and anger were some of the main causes of domestic violence in families.

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