Thu | Aug 17, 2017

Disappointing! - Few Jamaicans turn out for New Kingston march against violence

Published:Sunday | February 26, 2017 | 2:00 AM
Some of the handful of persons who turned out for a scheduled march against violence against women and children in New Kingston recently.

A disappointingly small turnout for a march to show opposition to violence against women and children left organiser Peta-Gaye Foster Morris fuming yesterday.

Foster Morris, who organises the Miss Jamaica Teen Contest, had dubbed the march 'Teenage lives matters/women lives matter', and said she was expecting more than 500 persons to join her from Emancipation Park in New Kingston to Mandela Park in the heart of Half-Way Tree.

But that was not to be.

"Seriously? No support!," exclaimed Foster Morris after waiting for almost half-hour after the scheduled 7 a.m. start.

With fewer than 20 persons out, Foster Morris could not hide her disappointment at what she had hoped to be a show of force to declare to the criminals that Jamaicans are fed up with the killing of women and children.

"I am very disappointed. The reason why I came here to Jamaica was to do my part in the fight against violence. I have a daughter, and being a mother, I have to do my part, but I am disappointed to see that Jamaica is all about class and class segregation," said Foster Morris.

"I think it's because a lot of the girls that are being murdered are from the poorer class why there is no support," added Foster Morris, who flew into the island last Friday from the United States, which she now calls home.

She told The Sunday Gleaner team that she left her home in the US to make the effort to organise the march and had sent out plenty of notifications about the event.

"This was to bring to surface the need for people to speak up and not sit with their molestation. I wanted people to speak out not only against the murderers, but for those who have been molested by pastors to speak up instead of taking it silently," said Foster Morris.

Members of the small group present were still eager to march but called it off after getting to Trafalgar Road, metres from their start point.

"Wake up, Jamaica. We all need to support each other and we don't need to wait until it happens to someone close to us before we start doing something about it," declared Foster Morris.

andrew.harris@gleanerjm.com