I have noted with dismay the contents of the headlined article in today’s Tribune, Tuesday, December 8, 2015, captioned, “Miller attacks Crisis Centre,” written by Tribune Staff Reporter, Khrisna Virgil. The article quotes statements made by Mr. Leslie Miller, the Member of Parliament for the Tall Pines Constituency, about The Bahamas Crisis Centre, which reportedly were also aired on a radio talk show.
As Minister responsible for Social Services and Community Development and Women’s Affairs, I wish to express my unequivocal support for and appreciation of the work of The Bahamas Crisis Centre.
This non-governmental organization, which was established in 1982, has over the years, demonstrated its commitment to enhancing the quality of life of women, children and families. The Crisis Centre is perhaps most well-known for its advocacy and support on behalf of victims of violence, as well as for legislation on their behalf. Its services include counselling, which is provided by a large pool of committed, trained volunteers and assistance with safe housing. The record of this organization in providing intervention, prevention and advocacy services to countless children, women and men, who have experienced domestic and sexual violence throughout our archipelagic nation is legendary.
The Bahamas Crisis Centre has been acknowledged nationally and internationally for its work. In 1997, the Centre was recognized as a model of excellence in Women’s Health Care by the Commonwealth Health Secretariat. In 1998, it was granted consultative status at the United Nations. It’s Director, Dr. Sandra Dean-Patterson, currently serves as the Expert for The Bahamas on an international body dealing with violence against women (The Convention of Belem do Para – a convention for the prevention, punishment and eradication of violence against women) and is a Consultant on matters of gender-based violence for the Ministry of Social Services and Community Development. Her renown in the international community and her work in this country are well-documented.
I wholeheartedly endorse the invaluable work provided by The Bahamas Crisis Centre and commend its Director, staff and many volunteers for their commitment and service to this Country.
STATEMENT BY THE HON. MELANIE S. GRIFFIN, MP MINISTER OF SOCIAL SERVICES AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT IN RESPONSE TO THE HEADLINED ARTICLE IN THE TRIBUNE, DECEMBER 8, 2015