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International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and Girls

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#November 25, 2023 – ‘Unite! Invest to Prevent Violence Against Women and Girls! # No Excuse’ is the theme to mark the 16 Days of Activism to End Violence Against Women and Girls.

The Department of Gender Affairs within the Ministry of Home Affairs, Public Safety and Utilities and the Telecommunications Commission will join the rest of the world in observance of 16 days of activism, which starts on 25 November with the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and Girls and ends on 10 December with Human Rights Day. This is an annual campaign that calls for concerted efforts for the prevention and elimination of violence among women and girls.

During this period, we call on the entire Turks and Caicos Islands to take a stand for our women and girls. It does not matter your age, profession, or financial status. We all need to invest in the care and protection of those around us.

The cultural norms, societal practices, traditions, patriarchal attitudes and deep-rooted stereotypes regarding roles, responsibilities and identities, are significant contributors to violence against women and girls. Studies show that out of 16% of females who experience childhood sexual violence, two-thirds are likely to experience multiple incidences before the age of 18. Intimate partners remain the most common perpetrators of violence among women throughout the Turks and Caicos Islands.

Based on the clients who report for assistance, it is clear that gender-based violence disproportionately harms women and girls in Turks and Caicos. Gender-based violence undermines the achievement of gender equality and, ultimately, societal sustainable development. Violence against women and girls is rampant and happens in both private and public spaces. Vulnerable groups such as pregnant women and those unemployed or under-employed face increased risks of sexual violence and exploitation.

We call on everyone throughout the Turks and Caicos Islands to stand together, speak up and act against all forms of violence against women and girls. The Department of Gender Affairs will continue our multisectoral efforts to advocate for the protection of women and girls from gender-based violence. It is our responsibility and obligation to join the rest of the world in investing the appropriate resources to communicate that we have adopted zero tolerance for this crime.

Key Activities

Join us on 25 November 2023 at the Antioch Seventh-day Adventist Church, starting at 9:30 a.m. for the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and Girls Church Service.

Members of the public are also encouraged to join the global community by wearing the colour orange from 25 November – 10 December to show support for the investment in initiatives to end violence against women and girls.

As we seek to share our national experiences globally, persons are encouraged to use the #OrangeTCI and #TCI16days hashtags and share messages on social media about the importance of ending violence against women.

The Department of Gender Affairs continues to stand in solidarity with regional and global movements toward ending all forms of violence in the Turks and Caicos Islands. We are and remain committed to working with all members of society across all sectors to strengthen prevention efforts to ensure access to justice.

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Town Hall De-briefing

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#TurksandCaicos, February 21, 2024 – Acting Commissioner of Police Christopher Eyre held a meeting with Her Excellency the Governor Dileeni Daniel-Selvaratnam and Member of Parliament for Grand Turk North, the Hon. Otis Morris, today (February 21st) at Police Headquarters, Airport Road, Providenciales.

The debriefing was to discuss concerns raised by residents during last evening’s Anti-Crime Town Hall meeting at the H.J Robinson High School, Grand Turk.

Commissioner Eyre expressed his deep appreciation to Her Excellency and Hon Morris for their attendance, saying that work was already underway to address the community concerns.

Commissioner Eyre said: “I acknowledge the challenges raised and wish to assure you that the Executive of the RTCIPF remains steadfast in ensuring the TCI is safe. We listened to your concerns, and I assure you that rebuilding trust and strengthening community-policing relations are top priorities.

“The RTCIPF has taken a holistic approach in the fight against crime. Increased visibility, greater stakeholder collaborations and ongoing dialogue forums to appraise you will occur. We are accountable to you.”

 

Photo Captions

Header: Town Hall Meeting Head Table (l-r) Superintendent of Prisons Michael Woodbine, HE the Governor Dileeni Daniel-Selvaratnam, Deputy Commissioner Rodney Adams, Superintendent Dean Holden, ag Commissioner of Police Christopher Eyre.

1st insert: HE the Governor Dileeni Daniel-Selvaratnam, MP Grand Turk North Hon Otis Morris and ag Commissioner of Police Christopher Eyre during this afternoon’s debriefing at Police Headquarters.

2nd insert: Grand Turk resident Derek Been addresses the head table during the Question and Answer segment

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Two Charged With Firearm Offences

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JERREAL MISSICK

#TurksandCaicos, February 21, 2024 – JERREAL MISSICK, 22, of Over Back, Grand Turk and SHAQUAZE FORBES, 21, also from Over Back, are expected to appear before a Magistrate charged with the following offences.

1) Gang Membership;
2) Possession of a Firearm;
3) Possession of Ammunition and
4) Discharging Firearm

Both Mr. Missick and Mr. Forbes were charged under the Anti-Gang Ordinance (2022) following an investigation into the discharging of a firearm incident that occurred on February 13th 2024, in Over Back.
The charges came after police officers consulted with the Office of the Director of Public
Prosecutions.

SHAQUAZE FORBES

Head of Crime, Safeguarding, and Public Protection Superintendent Dean Holden said: “This is another example of the Police Force’s relentless pursuit of those suspected to be involved in gang-related crime, specifically the criminal use of illegal firearms. This latest charge also demonstrates our continued use of the Anti-Gang legislation to target individuals who cause harm to our communities”.

The RTCIPF is asking the public to notify the closest police station, contact 911, the Serious Crime Unit at 231-1842,Crime Stoppers at 1-800-8477, and anonymously give any information on illegal activity.

Additionally, persons are encouraged to download the CrimeStoppers P3 app from the Google Play store or Apple Apps and share information anonymously.

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Ministry of Home Affairs, Public Safety and Utilities and Telecommunications proudly Commissions the Yellow Wing

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Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands, 21st February 2024 – The long-awaited completion and commissioning of the Yellow Wing at the Department of Correctional Services took place in Grand Turk yesterday.

The event was attended by a number of Government functionaries; including Her Excellencies, the Governor and Deputy Governor, Ms. Dileeni Daniel-Selvaratnam and Mrs. Anya Williams respectively, the Premier of the Turks and Caicos Islands, Hon. Charles Washington Misick, Attorney General, Hon. Rhondalee Braithwaite-Knowles, as well as the Minister for Home Affairs, Public Safety and Utilities and Telecommunication’s Commission, Hon. Otis Morris.

Hon. Josephine Connolly, Minister for Tourism, Permanent Secretaries, Mrs. Bridgette Newman, Mr. James Astwood and Mr. Miquel Swann, newly appointed interim Commissioner of Police, Mr. Chris Eyre, Chaplains of the HoA and the Prison, along with staff of the Public Works Department, Department of Correctional Services and Olympic Construction were also in attendance.

The reconstruction of the Yellow Wing commenced in May 2020, following destruction of the building by fire in 2019.

The ceremony was chaired by Assistant Superintendent, Mr. Clyde Greene. Among the officials who brought remarks, were, the Superintendent, the Minister, the Deputy Governor, the Premier and the Governor; all of whom expressed their delight in being able to participate in and witness the commissioning.

In his remarks, the Superintendent of the Department of Correctional Services, Mr. Michael Woodbine expressed his thanks and appreciation to the Government and Ministry for the additional funding received by the Department, to assist with the resolution of a number of longstanding issues.

He went on to note, “The key function of the prison is not only to protect the public by keeping those who pose a risk out of society, but it also has a wider role to play in supporting law enforcement”

He further highlighted some of the Department’s community activities, support given in various areas and his department’s plans for the year.

The Minister for Home Affairs, Public Safety and Utilities and Telecommunication’s Commission, Hon. Otis Morris in his remarks stated, “Today marks a significant milestone, as we gather to celebrate the completion of the Yellow Wing. This project has been a collaborative effort; which demonstrated my Government’s commitment to providing a safer and more humane environment for inmates and staff alike.” 

Hon. Morris went on to note that the improvements made to the Yellow Wing would not only enhance the living conditions for inmates but would also contribute to the overall rehabilitation and well-being of those in the Department’s care.

In conclusion, he encouraged all to continue to work together to uphold the highest standards of safety, security and rehabilitation within our correctional facilities.

Following the hand-over of the keys, cutting of the ribbon and blessing of the building; attendees were treated to a Control and Restraint mock exercise to remove a non-compliant and violent person from a cell.

The team demonstrated the manner in which they calmly manage these very difficult situations, trying their best to de-escalate the person’s heightened mood and aggression. The Exercise was well received and the team was highly commended for their negotiation and team work skills.

The ceremony ended with the Vote of Thanks by the Deputy Superintendent Mr. Raymond Grant.

The Department of Correctional Services with the of support of the Ministry of Physical Planning and Infrastructure Development will continue the upgrade of the facilities at the Department of Correctional Services with the works to the Blue and Green wings.

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