Churches must help address domestic violence

June 30, 2022 12:40 pm

European Union Deputy Head of Delegation, Dr Erja Askola.

Churches and faith-based groups must play a leading role in addressing cases of violence against women and children in the country and the region.

The launch of the Gender Status Card for Churches in the Pacific in Suva today was described as the first step to ensuring that this is achieved.

European Union Deputy Head of Delegation, Dr Erja Askola says a united front is the ideal solution to solving violence against women and children, which is constantly increasing in Fiji and the region.

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“This is why clearly the church and faith-based communities must be part of the effort to end or solve violence against girls and women. We are pleased to see this kind of recognition and commitment on the part of the churches.”

Askola says with nearly 97 percent of the Pacific population being Christians, religious leaders have a great responsibility to reach out to their congregation and help address the issue.

Statistics of violence against women in Fiji is among the highest in the world, with 64 percent of women having experienced physical and sexual violence by a husband or intimate partner in their lifetime.