From:TheBahamasWeekly.com

Bahamas Information Services Updates
Local talent used in PSAs designed to foster healthy relationships
Dec 10, 2009 - 2:51:02 PM

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Minister of State in the Ministry of Labour and Social Development the Hon Loretta Butler-Turner (left) helps the National Women's Advisory Council in launching Public Service Announcements designed to foster healthy relationships. Also pictured is Gwen Knowles, Chairperson, National Women's Advisory Council. (BIS photo/Letisha Henderson)

NASSAU, Bahamas -- The National Women's Advisory Council has created Public Service Announcements (PSAs) designed to foster healthy relationships, Minister of State in the Ministry of Labour and Social Development the Hon Loretta Butler-Turner said.  

The PSAs focusing on forgiveness, mutual respect and admitting to mistakes were produced with local talent for radio, and will be produced for television in the future, she announced at a press conference at her office on Wednesday.  

“A healthy relationship has open and an honest communication and an even playing field on which partners share power and control over decisions,” Mrs Butler-Turner said.  “Healthy relationships are characterized by respect.”  

Good relationships are the foundation of healthy families and healthy communities, she explained.  

“A number of social ills that are prevalent in our society are a result of unhealthy relationships.  Whether between family members, business partners or friends, unhealthy relationships are a breeding ground for abuse, which often results in violent actions.  

Regardless, of the nature of violence, whether it is physical, psychological or sexual – it is unacceptable, the Minister of State said.  

Positive messages on fostering healthy relationships, such as the ones being launched, must be rehearsed in homes and communities, she added.  

Mrs Butler-Turner encouraged civil society to advocate more of such initiatives.  “More action must be taken to prevent unhealthy relationships and to intervene where it does not exist.”  

Gwen Knowles, Chairperson, the National Women's Advisory Council said the group believes that healthy relationships in homes, schools, workplace, churches, organizations, including Junkanoo groups and on the basketball courts, make for a stable society.  

“This is the message that the National Women's Advisory Council wishes to share through a series of Public Service Announcements,” she explained.  

The National Women's Council believes believes that negative cultural behaviour can be changed if enough persons decide not to allow themselves to act in a destructive manner; take responsibility for their own actions and not blame others; ensure their principles and values are constant no matter the circumstances and humble themselves and listen to one another, Ms Knowles said.  

 “We believe that these PSAs will give ideas to help persons improve their listening and communicating skills,” she said.  

The messages will feature Terrance Fountain, past President of the Cancer Society; Dionisio D'Aguilar, past President of the Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and Mika Carter, President of the BAM-BAM Junior Achievement Company, counselled by Arawak Homes and Sunshine Insurance (Agents & Brokers) Ltd.  

Ms Knowles also stressed that the Council supports the proposed legislation for the Amendment to the Sexual Domestic Violence Act that is currently being considered in Parliament.  

The amended act would include married persons and protect them from rape just as it does unmarried individuals.  

“All women and men are entitled to realize the full protection of their human rights and a life free of domestic violence, and we believe that if you are in a 'healthy relationship' and have a high self-esteem this type of violence does not arise.”


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