More men being murdered - WHO report
EACH YEAR, more males are being murdered than females, stated the World Health Organization (WHO) Global Status Report on Violence Prevention 2014, released this week.
According to the report, which reflects data from 133 countries, homicide is the third leading cause of death for males in the 15-44 years age group. In 2012, there was a reported 475,000 homicides globally, 60 per cent of which were males in this age group.
The trend was no different for Jamaica as the report noted that of the total reported homicides on the island in 2011, 89 per cent were men. Firearm accounted for 70 per cent of the homicides, sharp force 19 per cent, and 11 per cent in the 'Other' category.
Data from the Jamaica Constabulary Force stated that up to December 6 of this year, there were 945 reported murders, 381 of which have been cleared up. St James had the highest number of murders, with 146; followed by St Catherine North, with 117; and St Catherine South, with 80, while Portland had the lowest, with seven homicides. The police were responsible for 104 fatal shootings; the Jamaica Defence Force for two; two from special guards, and 12 from licensed firearm holders.
Compared to the similar period over the last four years, this year showed a reduction in murders overall. In 2013, there were 1,128 murders, with 440 cleared up; in 2012, there were 1,025 homicides, with 401 cleared up; in 2011, there were 1,049 murders, with 432 cleared up; while in 2010, there were 1,357 murders, with 418 cleared up.
The Global Status Report on Violence Prevention is the first of its kind to assess national efforts to address interpersonal violence - namely, child maltreatment, youth violence, intimate partner and sexual violence.
Jointly published by the WHO, the United Nations Development Programme, and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, the report reviews the current status of violence-prevention efforts in countries and calls for a scaling up of violence-prevention programmes; stronger legislation and enforcement of laws relevant for violence prevention; and enhanced services for victims of violence.
"No country can rest on its laurels and assume it has successfully addressed interpersonal violence. The international community must continue to recognise interpersonal violence as an important health, criminal justice, development, and gender-equality issue and must step up its support for the prevention of and response to all forms of violence," the report noted.