Victims must stand up

Representatives from various organisations learn more about human rights and what other groups in Mitchells Plain are doing to help access these rights.

Domestic violence is a silent killer.

So says Mitchell’s Plain police station’s domestic violence co-ordinator, Sergeant Esmeralda Jacobs, who, along with other organisations dealing with raising awareness about human rights and ensuring they are upheld, attended a meeting hosted by the Mitchell’s Plain Community Advice and Development Project at Town Centre library on Thursday March 26.

Sergeant Jacobs explained that domestic violence cannot be policed unless the victim stands up for him or herself.

“It can be reported at the police station and everyone has the right to be treated fairly, with dignity and respect,” she said.

Sergeant Jacobs said when you arrive at the charge office you will be taken to a victim friendly room, where your statement will be taken.

“You have the right to open a case and/or (apply for) a protection order,” she said.

“We cannot discriminate against (you based on your) age, gender, whether you are rich, where you stay or your sexuality,” she said

Sergeant Jacobs said most cases are opened by women and often when men do report domestic violence, they do not follow through.

“Whether the incident happened in Mitchell’s Plain (or not), we must help you, but the docket will be transferred to the relevant police station,” she said.

She said victims or residents, who were not happy with the service they received with any police member, should report it immediately.

She said the police worked hand in glove with various community organisations, who helped and supported victims.

The Mitchell’s Plain Community Advice and Development Project (MPCADP) based at Room 13, first floor, OGS Building (Engen Garage), corner of First Street and Fourth Avenue, Town Centre, also pledged to support organisations and individuals who needed help upholding their human rights. For details, call the office on 021 392 2000 or email mitchellsplainadv@telkomsa.net