Village headman to aid in fight against domestic violence, minister says
Meltem Özgenç - ANKARA
Two women drawing a picture of murder victim Özgecan Aslan. DHA PhotoVillage headmen will become involved in the fight against domestic violence across Turkey, according to recent plans released by Family and Social Policies Minister Sema Ramazanoğlu who declared the plans in her first meeting after taking her post in the new cabinet.
Ramazanoğlu announced her ministry’s first order of business as preparing a third action plan for preventing violence against women.
According to the plans, religious officials, village headmen, teachers, family doctors, will coordinate to prevent violence.
The ministry have also decided to monitor the attackers and victims simultaneously in order to prevent incidents.
The Family Ministry already has a “panic button” application, which helps women call for help by using an electronic device, but the ministry has accepted that the measure has failed to yield sufficient results.
The ministry now plans to conduct pilot tests on electronic wristbands, similar to electronic bracelets used by the Justice Ministry to trace certain suspects or convicts released on probation. They will be able to monitor whether the attacker is approaching the victim.
The proposed new legal regulations will aim to raise awareness of the issue. They will also increase protective and preemptive measures to fight against the incidents. The ministry’s policies have been widely criticized by women rights activists for failing to take serious measures against the increased number of women murders in the hands of male relatives, husbands, ex-husbands, and lovers. The activists widely criticized a lack of measures that protect women from would-be murderers, along with the judiciary and security forces’ lack of sensitivity to the issue.