The Gauteng Department of Community Safety has failed to roll out nine Green Doors meant to ensure that the victims and survivors of gender-based violence receive prompt and effective services and prevent secondary victimisation of the survivors.
This information was revealed in the department’s first quarter report for the 2020/21 financial year.
According to the first quarter report, the department had a target of rolling out nine Green Doors.
This target was not achieved, and the reasons given by the department for non-achievement is that due to lockdown, no green doors were erected because of the inaccessibility of the homes.
A Green Door is a safe space in the community that is at least 5kms away from a police station and run by community members. It offers debriefing, containment and referral to necessary stakeholders such as local NGOs, SAPS, and courts. Green Door is a link between the community and SAPS, and the victim can stay up to 6 hours at the site.
The department’s failure to establish Green Doors clearly indicates that the ANC-led Gauteng government cares little about ensuring that the victims of gender-based violence are protected during this difficult period of lockdown as a result of the deadly Coronavirus pandemic.
With the increase of gender-based violence cases across the country during the lockdown, the department should have prioritised the establishment of Green Doors in the province instead of using Covid-19 as an excuse.
The DA calls on MEC Mazibuko to ensure that these Green Doors are prioritised to provide adequate and effective services and support to the victims and survivors of gender-based violence.
The DA has also tabled a Community Safety Private Members Bill which will ensure that cases of domestic and interpersonal abuse are treated with the concern they deserve by creating specific offences with serious consequences for those who fail to assist the victims in accordance with the duties placed on them by the Act, such as the police officers and court officials.