Feminist group calls for action on gender violence state of emergency
By John McPhaul
The Feminist Construction Collective on Thursday denounced what it said is a lack of action on the part of Family Secretary Carmen Ana González Magaz, who chairs the Committee for Gender Violence Prevention, Support, Rescue and Education (PARE by its Spanish acronym), in implementing the state of emergency against gender violence declared on Jan. 25.
“It has been pure pantomime, above all,” Shariana Ferrer-Núñez, the spokeswoman for the collective, said in a radio interview (NotiUno). “The proposal for the declaration of a state of emergency came from the collective almost three years ago. It has not been only our organization’s fight. It has been a people’s struggle.”
At around 7 a.m. on Thursday, the group held a protest on Avenida Ponce de León in front of the Mercantil Plaza building, where the Family Department offices are located.
“We believe that this state of emergency has not been implemented,” Ferrer-Núñez said. “And do you know how we can confirm it? From the few public minutes of the PARE Committee, when one sees their attendance, there are many heads of agencies who are missing.”
Also on Thursday, the Puerto Rico Association of Social Work Professionals, along with some 30 other organizations, announced an international campaign involving 16 days of civic action against gender violence beginning next Thursday and continuing until Dec. 21.
Association of Social Work Professionals President Larry Alicea said in a written statement that “We have to continue sending a message in an overwhelming and direct manner that gender violence in our country has brought us to a social emergency.”
“It’s time to continue strengthening the strategies and messages so that victims of gender violence can transcend this stalemate that harms them so much and that leaves them in a defenseless and impotent state,” Alicea said.