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Mar 14, 2018

Coming Together on Women and Violence Issues

The Belize Movement for Peace and Reconciliation says that it is strategizing and implementing change to address the cycle of violence that seems to have a grip on the country – and they will check their report card after a hundred days.   According to the organization’s leader, Cynthia Ellis-Topsey, the movement will bring together people who are on the ground working and they will tackle the issues that are giving rise to the escalating crime and violence from the root. In its call to action, Ellis-Topsey says that movement has zero tolerance on violence and wants to find solutions that promote healing and reconciliation. Here’s how that press conference went today.


Cynthia Ellis-Topsey

Cynthia Ellis- Topsey, Belize Movement for Peace and Reconciliation

“The first step is to identify who has been doing work that has had impact. We have a network of people called the Alternative to Violence Programme and these people, for example, have been reaching out to different countries to learn different paths to peace and reconciliation where genocide has taken place. We are doing an inventory first of all, bringing people together rather than having scattered initiatives because we hear of this one doing something and the other one doing something. So, the first task is to bring everybody together to listen to what they are doing and to make a declaration of working together. That is the first step and the second step is to make reference to things that have been done in other countries. We know, for example, there is Doctor Gayle and there is a Gayle Report which addresses the issue of men at risk. We are determined to implement the recommendations that Doctor Gayle made.  We have been organizing for years and years. Now we have to implement – move out of organization and into implementation action and the only way we can do it is together. So, Dr Gayle report needs to acknowledge that truly men are at risk. While I have been a pioneer in women’s organizing in Belize, I have shifted radically, from women to family. What is the state of the Belizean family? What does that look like and how can we move to a healthy family life and not be attacking men, or attacking women or attacking children? That is one of the immediate challenges that we are going to face. We are going to be a clearing house of information.  No matter what the propaganda is, the impact of these intervention programmes institutionally are not working. For all the investment that is going into so called counselling and interventions, if you look at the numbers of afflicted people and the numbers that these programmes bring out it is just like a drop in the bucket.”


Lance Lewis

Lance Lewis, President, Evangelical Association of Belize

“There might be a satanic scenario unfolding where there are people paying homage to Satan and that allows for some serious bloodletting – yes it is a spiritual warfare. I also feel that what Ms Cynthia has said – be a rallying point for the churches to come together because we have not been together. I recall in the year 2000, we had a conference here in Belize City and we had across the board churches to come to it. It was just a speaker and he had some words to say. It was not a rallying point about going forward. But we are now at a very serious point where the bloodletting has to stop and we are in this thing together. So, we have to get all sides in this nation to work towards a change.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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1 Response for “Coming Together on Women and Violence Issues”

  1. Marwaione says:

    Genocide is for mass killing, get government to create real meaning ful jobs, for the educated and skilled workers, all that millions theygot from selling land should be used for construction of the economy. These are the thieves, these gangsters should go after

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