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Western Cape’s GBV plan to specifically focus on LGBTQIA+ people

The department’s chief director Marion Johnson said GBV disproportionately affected women, children and LGBTQIA+ people who faced violence arising from their sexual orientation. Picture: Brendan Magaar/African News Agency(ANA)

The department’s chief director Marion Johnson said GBV disproportionately affected women, children and LGBTQIA+ people who faced violence arising from their sexual orientation. Picture: Brendan Magaar/African News Agency(ANA)

Published Apr 7, 2022

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Cape Town - The provincial government’s GBV (gender-based violence) Implementation Plan will include transgender women, feminine-identifying and non-binary people in key interventions that aim to strengthen its existing GBV responses within the Western Cape’s particular socio-economic, cultural and political landscape.

This emerged during a briefing by the provincial social development department to the legislature, in which members of the social development standing committee were told that GBV was a gross human rights violation, with significant personal and economic impact.

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The department’s chief director Marion Johnson said GBV disproportionately affected women, children and LGBTQIA+ people who faced violence arising from their sexual orientation.

“The purpose of the GBV Implementation Plan for the 2022/2023 financial year is to support a vision of a South Africa free from GBV directed at women, children and LGBTQIA+ people.” She said the implementation plan was not a one-size-fits-all approach, but consisted of tailored interventions needed to address the diverse experiences, circumstances and support needed by those victimised.

“For example, the experiences of, and psychosocial support needed by LGBTQIA+ persons will differ from that of other vulnerable persons.”

Included in the plan are all workers, such as domestic workers, sex workers, farm workers and disabled women.

Social Development MEC Sharna Fernandez told the committee that the department was responsible for identifying, profiling and supporting youth at risk of violent or criminal behaviour. The department also provided an update on the implementation of its province-wide GBV reduction methods, which include measures to provide psychosocial care for survivors at GBV shelters and Thuthuzela Centres.

Standing committee chairperson Dan Plato (DA) said: “GBV and sexual harassment are traumatising, egregious and highly nuanced issues that affect many within our province and our country.”

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