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Men afraid to report domestic violence - JUGC

Published:Thursday | September 11, 2014 | 12:00 AM

Alessandro Boyd, Gleaner Writer

BISHOP CONRAD Pitkin, chairman of the Jamaica Umbrella Group of Churches (JUGC), has agreed that the issue of domestic violence in the church is under-reported. However, he noted that there are methods of controlling and addressing it.

Pitkin was responding to a Sunday Gleaner story which stated that domestic violence in the Church is a major problem.

"I know most, if not all, of our churches conduct several workshops and seminars on conflict management and relationships, sometimes in order to prevent and address these issues," he told The Gleaner.

fearful of stigmatism

Pitkin added: "I think that the whole aspect of domestic violence is very pervasive and it is not something that people talk about very easily. It is something that is hardly reported. In fact, men are even more reluctant to report it than females because they would be stigmatised in a negative manner. So we are faced with many challenges," Pitkin continued.

He also stated that he has not dealt with any issues of domestic violence since he became chairman of the JUGC.

"It is not something that I have dealt with on a regular level as I have not come across any of my church members with it as of yet. However, that does not mean it is not there," he said.

"It is something that we just have to keep working on and encourage people to come out and talk about it, because violence in any form is not acceptable," Pitkin told The Gleaner.

The JUGC consists of the Jamaica Council of Churches, Jamaica Association of Whole Gospel Churches, The Seventh-day Adventist Church, The Church of God, Jamaica Independent Group of Churches, Jamaica Pentecostal Union (Apostolic), and the Jamaica Evangelical Alliance.