The Ministry of Social Care and the Child Care Board have stepped in to provide assistance to the young children of 36-year-old nail technician Onica King who was fatally stabbed while at work at #41 Mandela Mall, Swan Street yesterday.
Social Care Minister Steve Blackett expressed dismay at reports that the children, said to be ages six and three, witnessed the violent crime that occurred around 2:45 p.m.
“The Child Care Board has actually come on board and is offering services of counselling for the children and that will be my principal aim at this point to have those children counselled,” he said.
Blackett, a strong advocate against domestic violence, said there was an urgent need for partners to seek to resolve their differences peacefully.
“I wish that as human beings that we could deal with these matters, trash them out in our own domestic spaces before they reach the point where a life is lost. It saddens me every time that something like this happens,” he said.
Police said King was reportedly involved in an altercation with a man, said to be her husband, just before she met her death. The man fled the scene.
The Minister noted that Government had taken action to deal with the problem, citing the Domestic Violence Order Act, which he tabled in Parliament that has widened the powers of the Parliament, the police and the Judiciary to handle matters related to domestic violence.
However, the Gender Affairs Committee of the National Union of Public Workers today called on the Government to review the domestic violence laws and the criminal code to initiate and implement “an appropriate legislative framework” for cases where there was a history of violence and abuse.
“Legislation and judicial reform is needed now more that ever if we are to save the lives of our men and women from acts of domestic violence. More must be done and with haste” said committee chairman, Makala Beckles-Jordan.