Initiatives by police for Women’s Month

With Women’s Month coming to an end, the Lwandle police has vowed to continue to take a stand against gender-based violence in their policing precinct.

The police have initiated and embarked on awareness campaigns in an attempt to stop this form of violence.

They also aim to empower the community to deal with these forms of violence and to encourage them to seek help early.

Sergeant Mthokozisi Gama, police spokesperson, said they started by distributing pamphlets that had information on gender-based violence.

It also spoke to women and children’s rights and what help is available, should they need assistance.

Gama says the Lwandle victim support room or victim-friendly room services were marketed to the community as one of the places where they can acquire assistance. “The community was also informed of social workers services available from other government departments and local non-governmental organizations. Police also visited the local schools to speak with learners about school safety, crime in general and consequences of substance abuse and of being involved in criminal activities.

“Police even further conducted random school searches in two high schools to ensure that there are no drugs and dangerous weapons used and carried within school premises,” said Gama.

He says they also conducted a radio interview with a local radio station to forge the partnership between the police and the community in their endeavour to fight crime in their community.

Gama said they urged all women to help bring an end to gender-based violence by quickly reporting these incidents and encouraged them to say “no to gender-based violence”.

He said police also appeal to the community to report such incidents should they witness it or know anyone suffering from these forms of gender-based violence.

Gama says in curbing sexual offences, specifically rape which has recently increased, Lwandle police issue the following prevention tips:

. do not walk alone at night / in dark places;

. always guard your drinks when drinking around people;

. do not take a lift from strangers or give lifts to strangers;

. inform someone when going out on a first date and have contact numbers of close people;

. always carry pepper spray to defend yourself and carry a whistle to blow for help;

. learn survival defence technical tips;

. get medical assistance quickly, at least within 72 hours;

. get to a safer place;

. tell the first person you encounter. Should this person be a stranger, ask for a name and contact number as they may be asked to testify in court;

. do not shower or wash as this will destroy evidence of the crime;

. if you have washed already, place the clothing you were wearing in a plastic bag as evidence; and

. do not drink tea or sugar water as DNA samples will need to be taken from your mouth.