New Dawn For Rape Survivors?

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By: R. Joyclyn Wea:j.wea@newrepublicliberia

The Government of Liberia through the Ministry of Gender, Children Social Protection (MGCSP) has begun the construction of rehabilitation and safe homes to care for survivors of rape which align with recent called by anti-rape protesters some weeks back.

Presenting the Anti-Rape Road Map on SGBV document on Tuesday, September 8, 2020 for revision and consideration by participants at the conference, Gender Minister Williametta Piso Saydee Tarr disclosed that the MGCSP in collaboration with the Ministries of Health, Finance, partners, and international donors have begun rehabilitation of three of the safe homes with additional three being reconditioned to incorporate survivors.

This, she claimed will be completed and accessible to survivors by December of this year with hope to construct safe homes in all fifteen counties as of June 2021 to resolve the issue of stigmatization of survivors. 

Unlike other countries where survivors of rape are taking care of, the issue of safe homes to care for survivors is a serious challenge for the Government and people of Liberia, as in most cases survivors are taken back into communities where they were victimized.

Minister Tarr further unveiled that talk has begun to construct four additional safe homes in the country, the idea she said is to have adequate safe homes in all fifteen counties to care for women, girls, and children who have been abused. 

“We have safe homes that are run by government and safe homes that are run by our CSOs partners. We want to be able by 2021 to have two safe homes in Montserrado, Grand Gedeh and Grand Kru counties,” she asserted.

The homes when constructed will incorporate women, girls, boys, and children who have gone through such horrible act and will no longer be released to the public or communities where they were abused, but will rather be taken to the safe homes for counseling and other care.

Anti-Rape Road Map on SGBV promises to be at the advantage and beneficiary to survivors as it focuses on three major areas with support and timeline: issues health, legal (justice for perpetrators) and safe homes were these individuals can be attended to from the time of the incident to it conclusion point.

The conference was intended to identify issues that are not in the anti-rape road map document and those ones that are within that need to be excluded from the document.

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