HomeLatest NewsStrengthening Police Response to DV Incidents Is a Priority 

Strengthening Police Response to DV Incidents Is a Priority 

Dolores Balderamos-Garcia

Strengthening Police Response to DV Incidents Is a Priority 

Last month, Cabinet approved the Revised National Gender Policy 2024-2030. This updated policy sets out to achieve gender equity, and equality, and eliminate discrimination against women and girls in Belize. A 2021 document outlining the National Gender Policy Framework highlighted several issues within the Belize Police Department’s response to domestic violence. Despite the establishment of a Domestic Violence Unit a decade ago, trained officers often rotate to other units due to a lack of career advancement opportunities. Disparities in operational hours were noted, with the unit in Belize City operating around the clock, while units in other parts of the country only operate during regular business hours. The report also underscored the limited availability of shelters for domestic violence victims. In response, the latest revised version of the policy prioritizes enhancing police response and victim recovery services. Today, we asked Minister of Human Development, Dolores Balderamos-Garcia, about these crucial areas.


Dolores Balderamos- Garcia, Minister of Human Development 

“I think the improvement will come with collaboration. The policy assists us in terms of the direction we want to go. And, because we have come a long way in combatting gender-based violence then what we have to do is work much more with partnerships. So, the policy will inform the actions that will be taken and thank you for raising the issue that the Domestic Violence Unit and the Police Department is understaffed. We will certainly be having discussions with the minister and the commissioner of police to see if we could provide more assistance there. I do know there have been many good interventions, even though in March we had some very sad and tragic occurrences. We had two murder suicides, and then we had other things that have happened, other incidents, a high-level officer of the BDF being accused of severe domestic violence. The message we have to send is that there will be zero tolerance and yes we need more facilities of shelters for people seeking help. Sometimes it takes as many as five to six tries for a woman to come out of a domestic violence situation, because she is so invested in the home, the children and the life she has that it is difficult to walk away when somebody is beating you. But we have had some good successes, and the policy will inform the actions going forward.”

Facebook Comments

Share With: