Openbaar Ministerie-Curacao-Sint Maarten-BES Islands

Curacao

Violence within the relational atmosphere is a problem that unfortunately occurs widely, but often remains invisible. Often this phenomenon is referred to as "domestic violence", but actually this is too restrictive as it gives the impression that the violence is limited to persons living in the same house together.

In relational violence it often (but not always) has to do with physical and /or sexual violence, whether or not accompanied by damage to goods, whereby the perpetrator and the victim are related to one another by blood or affinity, or have or have had a (n) (extramarital) love affair with each other, or with the other half of a married couple, and/or are (home) friends (or friends) of each other. Relational violence can also be expressed in threats and harassment. Relational violence can occur anywhere and is not limited to the man who abuses his female partner and/or children. Victims of violence, it is true, in most cases are women and children, but it also affects men, parents and the elderly. In only a few cases victims do file a report. Some of them dare not file a report, or assume that the police and the justice system will not give follow up to it.

Relational violence has for a long time already had special attention from the Public Prosecution. In principle the Prosecution always pursues provable cases of relational violence. A 2006 directive has been completely revised in 2010 and supplemented with provisions which also identify children as victims when they witness relational violence, so now they also can get victim aid. If a child is a victim or witness of relational violence, a notification is done to the Central Reporting Center of Child Abuse (Centraal Meldpunt Kindermishandeling).

In the event of relational violence in your environment, you can report it and/or make it open to discussion at the Stichting Slachtofferhulp Curaçao (tel. 747 7229/ 510 7575). You can go there in case you still do not want to notify or report this to the police. Together with Slachtofferhulp you can consider your further steps. In all other cases you can address yourself to the nearest police station in your neighbourhood.  

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