Cabinet approves action plan against sexual abuse

Cabinet approves action plan against sexual abuse

The cabinet on Tuesday approved a six-year action plan to prevent and deal with sex crimes and harassment, as proposed by the Ministry of Social Development and Human Security, government deputy spokeswoman Rachada Dhnadirek said yesterday.

The plan is based on opinions garnered from networks involved in women’s affairs, as well as local administrative bodies and other government agencies. The plan is set for implementation by state agencies in 2023.

State agencies will be duty-bound to change attitudes in society so people do not remain indifferent towards the problem of rape and sexual abuse. Effective mechanisms to monitor and prevent sexual violence must be formulated. Safe areas and channels must be provided for people to lodge complaints about such crimes and actions.

To ensure justice, the rights and liberties of victims must be protected. The action plan stipulates that sexual offenders must undergo a behavioural adjustment process and that there must be a database detailing information about sex offenders.

Repeat offenders should face sterner punishments, including chemical castration.

Laws and legal procedures should be amended to better protect the rights and liberties of damaged parties in sexual violence cases. Government officials who commit sexual harassment should be subject to serious disciplinary action.

According to Ms Rachada, data compiled on violence against children and women in 2021 showed that, on average, seven women reported being victims of a sex crime or harassment every day.