Eersterus residents protest outside the home of Evelyn de Kock who was killed - allegedly by her boyfriend - on Sunday. Picture: Oupa Mokoena/African News Agency (ANA)
Eersterus residents protest outside the home of Evelyn de Kock who was killed - allegedly by her boyfriend - on Sunday. Picture: Oupa Mokoena/African News Agency (ANA)

LETTER: Treatment and rehabilitation may be key to ending gender-based violence

By Michelle Murtough Time of article published Jun 17, 2020

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Too often we are focused on the police to solve what is, in essence, a social and mental health issue. Punishment in the short term may work but those that abuse will go back to their old ways, escaping from an abuser successfully simply means that the abuser will move onto their next victim, we need solutions to fix these problems.

There are men who are sociopaths, psychopaths, who suffer from borderline personality disorders or anger dysregulation that would benefit from treatment and that may in the long term with treatment stop becoming abusers and stop turning into murderers. If the government creates treatment programs and used community treatment orders to force those suspected of domestic abuse into these programs it would go a long way to fix this scourge on our society, instead of simply jailing them and then letting them out to abuse again.

They could provide free treatment and try to reach out and educate men that if you have trouble controlling your anger, if you control your partner and abuse them that you need help, that you need treatment to stop hurting your family, to stop you from turning into a murderer.

Why doesn't the education department target middle school with education programs to teach about gender equality and respect, to start showing our youngsters what's right and what's wrong and allow those youngsters that may start to identify issues such as rage in themselves, help them get started on getting help now rather than turning into abusers when they grow up?

It's taken a long time for me to get over my anger, and the government simply thinks that jailing people will help. 

Let's force the government to start setting up these programs to start us on that long road to becoming a society where we are respected and where this killing can stop.

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