Locadia Mavhudzi Midlands Correspondent
THERE is need to increase Victim Friendly Unit (VFU) services at police stations to enable victims of gender-based violence to report their cases and access professional help.
Speaking at a workshop to commemorate 16 days of activism against gender-based violence, Women’s Coalition director for Gweru Mrs Violet Magodo said gender violence should stop immediately, describing the act as barbaric and archaic.
“As women, we are worried by the surge in cases of gender-based violence and the victims are largely women and girls. We are appealing to the police to increase Victim Friendly Unit services at all police stations so that women and girls can access professional help when reporting gender-based violence cases,” she said.
Mrs Magodo said they are worried about the treatment of women as they report cases of violence in society.
“It is disheartening to note that women face a lot of discouragements in their quest to report gender-based violence. The family, society, police and the judiciary are reluctant to assist victims.
“In many cases we have realised that access to justice is denied to the victims hence the need to increase professionalism. Such complainants need some form of privacy and therefore the need for VFU services far from other criminal matters,” she said.
Meanwhile, Mrs Magodo said as a coalition they are now lobbying the Government for women involvement in local and national budgeting processes among other decision making processes.