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What is normal? #LetsTalkTT – A conversation on gender based violence

Published: 
Monday, December 11, 2017
Members of 2 Cents Movement during the performance of Common Grounds.

Normal? That not normal! But, this is normal! Those were the cries of the cast of the 2 Cents Movement as they began a lively, emotional and pore-raising performance, Common Grounds’ at a #LetsTalkTT event hosted jointly by the British High Commission and European Union Delegation to T&T. The event, which featured an address by Reema Carmona, and remarks from British High Commissioner Tim Stew MBE, and Ambassador Aad Biesebroek of the EU Delegation, brought together various gender stakeholders and young people at the British High Commissioner’s Residence to continue the conversation on gender based violence, as the 16 Days of Activism are commemorated internationally.

This, the second instalment of the #LetsTalkTT initiative, emphasises the British High Commission and European Union Delegation’s commitment to engaging different stakeholders, including youth, on the issue of violence against women. Carmona called for “no one to be left behind” and acknowledged gender-based violence, child marriage and female genital mutilation as a human rights violation, which undermines the health and wellbeing of women and girls.

Describing, the evening’s performance as “a sobering one, drawing attention to the unacceptable crime of gender violence,” Stew has called for individuals to “open our eyes to how we can challenge the cultural norms which hold back gender equality, here in Trinidad and Tobago and elsewhere across the globe.”

Echoing these sentiments, Ambassador Biesebroek, of the EU Delegation, took the opportunity to highlight the importance of working collectively to address the issues, noting the fluctuating figures regarding gender-based violence. He called on the media to assist by giving these issues greater priority in coverage.

The thought-provoking performance by the 2 Cents Movement, gave the audience much to ponder as the play addressed not just society’s view of what is normal and acceptable in the interplay between men and women, but also issues such as love versus dependency, care versus control and the characteristics of a ‘real’ man. It was an invitation to not only to question long-held beliefs and gender stereotypes, but also to think about the education of young men and the empowerment of young women to change the dynamic and counter those behaviours that can lead to abuse.

The #LetsTalkTT series targets a wide cross-section of society, encouraging stakeholders to propose solutions and prevent the perpetuation of violence and abuse by the next generation. Acknowledging the importance of collaboration, #LetsTalkTT welcomes engagement with new partners. A video of the entire #LetsTalkTT event is available for viewing and discussion on the Facebook pages of the British High Commission and the European Union at: https://www.facebook.com/UKinTT/ and https://www.facebook.com/EUinTandT/.

The video can also be viewed on the EU Delegation’s website at: https://eeas.europa.eu/delegations/trinidad-and-tobago_en

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