Bahamas Not Serious About Domestic Violence

Friday 04th, April 2014 / 10:48 Published by

domestic-violenceThis morning I heard in a local news report that a man convicted of causing grievous harm to his girlfriend was sentenced by a magistrate to pay $300 to the Crisis Centre. Although he was also ordered to receive anger management counseling, he was not given a custodial sentence even though, according to the news report, as a result of the harm it is uncertain if the woman will be able to see out of one of her eyes. I was absolutely stunned. How can such grievous harm attract such light punishment?

Sadly, it is light sentences like this one that continue to communicate that we as a country are not serious about addressing violence in general and domestic violence in particular. We give lip service to it, but we do precious little to combat it. However, what is desperately needed is for the laws passed by our legislators and the punishment meted out by our courts to better reflect how we say we feel about particular crimes. Otherwise, we are fooling ourselves.

Recently, the Crisis Centre rejected a $1,000 check from the Hon. Leslie Miller; I believe they did the right thing in rejecting it. Therefore, I trust that in similar fashion they will reject this man’s tokenistic $300 check (and similar ones) and send a message to both the abuser and the magistrate that some in our country do take violence seriously.

By: Pastor Cedric Moss

 

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