Ombudsman’s violence report gets Committee approval

A Parliamentary Committee has recommended the Legislative Assembly approve the Office of the Ombudsman’s Report on the National Inquiry into Family Violence in Samoa.

This was according to the Standing Orders, Electoral, Petitions and Constitutional Offices Committee report 2018/2019.

The Committee has put forward recommendations for the Legislative Assembly and the Government’s consideration.

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The first one is that the Government legislates to create a mandatory framework to set up a family violence prevention office under the Ministry of Women Community and Social Development. 

“This office should provide national family violence prevention strategy and communications strategy to promote family safety. That the family violence prevention office should prioritize establishing guidelines for the family violence prevention council and task force, and to provide a solid foundation for a coordinated inter agency response to family violence as highlighted in part 6 of the committee report,” the report stated.

 The final report of the Office of the Ombudsman’s two-year inquiry was released in September last year and it revealed shocking statistics into the realities of family violence in Samoa.

According to the National Inquiry into Family Violence in Samoa, 90 per cent of intimate partner violence in Samoa goes unreported.

Of the 90 per cent of the unreported partner violence, the Samoa Family Health and Safety Study of 2006 found that 86 per cent considered their abuse as normal or not serious. 

If that is not bad enough, 70 per cent believed that their abuse was justified.

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