Gender-Based Violence Awareness

Gender-Based Violence Awareness

Gans-Berg Nuus / News

Gender-Based Violence Awareness

As we celebrate women’s month and give recognition to the important role that women are playing in our daily lives and our country, we must also acknowledge that gender-based violence has become a pandemic where too many women are abused on a day-to-day basis at the hands of men who are supposed to be the protectors but has become the abusers. With the following information below the Gansbaai SAPS in partnership with the local CPF want to create more awareness in the fight against gender-based violence.

Domestic violence

Domestic violence or abuse is regulated by the Domestic Violence Act. This Act is applicable when domestic violence takes place in a domestic relationship.

What is a domestic relationship?

A domestic relationship exists with - someone you are or were married to; your parents or guardian; any family member(s), including your child(ren); anyone you have been living with, whether married or not; your partner of the same sex; someone you went out with, even for a short time, or had sex with; or someone with whom you share a child.

What is domestic violence?

The following can be regarded as domestic violence:

Sexual abuse (whether married or not); Physical abuse or assault; Threats of harm; Damage to property or anything you value; Repeatedly following or approaching you or your children (stalking).

Economic abuse

Keeping money to which you are legally unreasonably entitled from you, by:

Refusing to pay or share the rent or mortgage bond for the home you share; disposing of any property (household goods) in which you have interest, without permission.

Emotional abuse

Degrading or humiliating behaviour, including repeated insults, belittling, name-calling or threats; Any other controlling or abusive behaviour which may harm your safety, health or well-being.

What are your options if abused?

You have the right to:

Apply for a protection order at the nearest police station or magistrates’ court; lay a criminal charge at the police station, as well as apply for a protection order.

What is a protection order? 

It is an order issued by a court at your request, ordering a person with whom you have or had a domestic relationship, to stop the abuse and may also prevent the person from getting help from any other person to commit such acts. An interim protection order can also be issued, day or night, to protect you from danger.

Who may apply for an order?

Any victim of domestic violence.

Children, and if they are too young, the parent or guardian, as well as any person on behalf of someone they are responsible for, but with their permission; A police official.

The SAPS's commitment to the victim

It is the commitment of the SAPS to treat a victim of domestic violence with sensitivity and care. We will:

Treat you with respect and dignity; listen to what you have to say; not insult or blame you or suggest that it was your fault that you were abused; assist you with empathy and care; inform you of your rights and options (To ensure that this has been done, we will ask that you sign the Occurrence Book at the police station); provide you with a notice in a language you understand, and explain how you should proceed; make an effort to find someone to address you in a language you understand; take your statement in privacy and not in the presence of the abuser or the public; decide, based on your statement, whether to arrest the abuser and take his/her firearm as well as determine your needs and how to assist you; serve a protection order on the person against whom it was made as directed by the court; keep a copy of the protection order and record every arrest made as proof for you; note your complaint in the Incident Register at the station as further proof of your reporting the matter. This will also enable us to report on the progress in your case.

What will the SAPS do at the scene?

We will protect you; We will ensure that you are not in danger; We will take your statement in privacy; If an offence has been committed and if you are in danger, we will arrest the offender without a warrant; We will search the premises and seize any firearm found in the possession of the person who has threatened to kill or injure anyone; We will also do this if we are satisfied that the offender’s mental state, inclination towards violence and dependence on alcohol or drugs would influence their behaviour and pose a threat to anyone.

What other assistance will SAPS provide?

We will assist you, where possible to access:

medical assistance; a shelter; victim counselling. 

We will inform you of:

The support services that are available in the area; shelters in the area if you need to leave your home; counselling services; nearby hospitals; ambulance services; medical practitioners; services that are for free; the time of day these services are available.

We will ensure that a medical officer collects and records any medical evidence in support of any criminal charge.

What to do if the abuser disobeys the protection order?

Phone the South African Police Service. A statement will be taken from you. Provide the police members with the warrant of arrest you received with the protection order (if you have lost it apply at the court for another one). If you are in immediate danger the abuser will be arrested, otherwise, the abuser will be given the notice to appear in court the next day. Have a crisis plan ready

Identify places where you can quickly and easily use a phone. Always carry a list of emergency numbers. Make sure that the people you usually visit, have a copy of the protection order and/or warrant of arrest. Put some money in a safe place so that you can take a taxi or bus in case of an emergency. Have an extra set of keys for the house or car. If possible, have a set of clothes for yourself (and your children) packed in a bag, and keep it in a safe place (eg at the neighbour’s). If you are planning to leave, leave when your partner is not around, and take your children with you. Make sure that you have essential documents like IDs, your medical aid card, your savings/credit card etc.

Who can you contact?

Contact your local police station or any of the following organisations:

Gansbaai SAPD @ 028 384 0201 1011.

Crime Stop @ 08600 10111.

Women Abuse Helpline @ 0800 150 150.

Lieutenant Colonel W Coetzee 082 778 7085.

Gender-Based Violence Awareness

Gans-Berg Nuus / News

Gans-Berg Nuus is a weekly bilingual community newspaper serving Gansbaai and the surrounding Overstrand areas. With a front page that alternates between Afrikaans and English each week, Gans-Berg Nuus / News is proud to be a platform that stays up to date with local news stories, important municipa...

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