St Ann women gather for 'Thursdays in Black' protestThursday, May 13, 2021
ST ANN, Jamaica — A small group of women gathered in front of the St Ann Parish Court this morning to show their support for 'Thursdays in Black', a peaceful protest against gender-based violence, which organisers are hoping will be islandwide.
Only five of them had gathered, the women explained, because they wanted to respect the safety protocols in place to curb the spread of COVID-19. Gatherings of more than 10 people are in violation of the rules outlined under the Disaster Risk Management Act.
The women, who identified themselves as members of the People's National Party's Women's Movement, wore black T-shirts emblazoned with their message.
They told OBSERVER ONLINE that they dropped off letters to Mayor of St Ann's Bay Sydney Stewart and minority leader Winston Brown along with one to be passed on to Prime Minister Andrew Holness.
“[The letter] is just basically asking them for representation for women in and around the parish [and across] the country… we would like their assistance,” explained the president of the Alexandria constituency and constituency representative for St Ann South West, Norah Harris.
The plan was for this effort to be duplicated in all 14 parishes.
“At the same time [10:00 am] that we handed over our letters to the mayor and the minority leader, we had other representatives in other parishes doing the same thing,” said chair of the Brown's Town Women's Movement and constituency representative for St Ann North West, Marcia Harris. She was convinced their effort would make an impact as protests were to be staged across the country.
The St Ann group's next move today, they said, is to go to various constituencies in the parish to continue voicing their concerns about gender-based violence.
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