SEIF Ples Gender-Based Violence Crises and Referral Centre is calling on the government and development partners to continue supporting service providers to deliver quality services to victims and survivors of sexual and domestic violence.
Self Ples made this call following the “relatively high” number of domestic and sexual violence cases reported to the centre last month, even though the centre’s accommodation service was closed in June due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a statement yesterday Seif Ples deputy centre manager Falu Maesugea said a total of 24 cases were received in June.
Ms Maesugea said 12 cases were of domestic violence and the other 12 involving rape and sexual abuse.
“Not only the high number of cases reported in June but also the nature of these cases is just outright appalling,” she said.
“Out from the 12 rape cases received, six are children under the age of 10, five children under the age of 17 and one person with a disability.”
Seif Ples strongly condemns such cases in the strongest possible terms and urgently calls on members of families and communities to be vigilant and vocal about these cases and not to turn a blind eye when noticing or being notified of such cases.
“This is because and evidenced by studies, that 90 percent of such cases received by Seif Pleis occur in homes and amongst family members, the very place where anyone should feel safe and by the very people who are trusted to keep the home safe.
“Rape is a crime and it is punishable by law, under the Family Protection Act and the Penal Code,” a concerned Ms Maesugea said.
Seif Ples strongly encourage families and communities to take a stand and report rape and abuse cases to the police on 999 or call Safenet hotline on 132.
For public awareness, Seif Pleis provides the following services, short-term accommodation or shelter for victims of domestic violence, sexual abuse and rape.
It also provides medical services such as medical aid, medical examinations, psychological first aid, emergency contraceptive pills, and vaccinations
Seif Ples also makes referrals to Safenet services such as Christian Care Centre, Family Support Centre, Empower Pacific, Public Solicitors Office, National Referral Hospital, and Mental Health Unit.
It is multi-sectorial and partners include Royal Solomon Islands Police Force (RSIPF), Ministry of Police, National Security and Correctional Services, Ministry of Health and Medical Services, and Honiara City Council, Health Division.