Minister urges citizens to use peaceful alternatives for the sake of our children

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Minister urges citizens to use peaceful alternatives for the sake of our children

On the heels of recent gun attacks in which children were either in the vicinity or harmed, Minister with responsibility for Gender and Child Affairs, Ayanna Webster-Roy, has made a plea for citizens to turn away from violence, especially when it impacts children directly and indirectly.

In a statement on Tuesday afternoon, Webster-Roy said she “painfully noted” stories within the media which “harmed or killed” children across the nation. She referenced a one-year-old baby girl who was grazed by a bullet during an attack.

The minister urged those who are contemplating violence to consider peaceful alternatives, especially when it impacts children. She said, “No form of violence is justifiable, and violence is certainly preventable. I am making a plea for all those who are considering the use of violence, to turn a new leaf and let us, together, transform Trinidad and Tobago into a safe place for all our children. Put down the gun, set aside hate and malice and let us reclaim our land for the sake of our children.”

Webster-Roy said violence and non-violence could make the difference in how a child develops. She added, “The prevention of violence in childhood provides the foundation for the positive development of our families and communities and leads to a stable and just society.”

In urging individuals and families who may be impacted by violence to seek out essential services early, she stated, “The public is reminded that every child has the inalienable right to be protected from any and all forms of violence, regardless of whether the violence is directed towards the child, or whether the child is made to witness or is simply collateral damage due to acts of violence.”