The Supreme Court of the FSM hosts gender and family violence workshops

FSM Supreme Court

GendFBThe Supreme Court of the Federated States of Micronesia and the Pacific Judicial Strengthening Initiative (PJSI) hosted local Gender and Family Violence Workshops in Pohnpei from 7-11 January and Kosrae from 14-18 January, 2019.

The two Gender and Family Violence Workshops were attended by National, State and Local court staff, FSM Health, National and State law enforcement officers, Micronesian Legal Services Corporation, women organizations, faith-based organizations and civil society representatives.

The aim of the workshops were to enhance awareness of issues surrounding family violence in the Federated States of Micronesia and across the Pacific. Some of the topics that were discussed included gender-based violence and its causes, gender inequality, victim-focused services and perpetrator accountability. The workshop discussed how the Courts could reflect and make incremental changes to improve its response to family violence following discussions around the Gender and Family Violence Toolkit. Contextualising issues in the Pacific the two weeks also looked at how to address specific challenges around cultural perspectives and religious interpretations on the work towards gender equality and addressing family violence.

“I am a perpetrator and I am ashamed about it.  I grew up seeing domestic violence in my family.  I am grateful and thankful to be invited to this workshop as I now understand that culture does not condone domestic violence. I’ve learnt that witnessing domestic violence should not be used as an excuse for a person who chooses to perpetrate domestic violence” said one of the Kosrae male participants.

“I am glad I attended this workshop as I can use what I learned to teach the youth in my church” says a Pohnpei participant.

The Gender and Family Violence Workshop is one of the many workshops held by the Pacific Judicial Strengthening Initiative within the Pacific. The initiative is funded by New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, which has supported promoting the rule of law across the Pacific over recent years.