MINISTER of Social Development and Family Services Donna Cox joined forces with Ayanna-Webster Roy, Minister in the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) (Gender and Child Affairs) to fight domestic violence.
A release said the ministers met at the OPM, St Clair, Port of Spain on Wednesday to discuss strategies to address the many challenges facing families, and prioritised domestic violence.
At the meeting Cox revealed her ministry's plans to introduce a "family first responder system" to provide support to families from the level of the community, the release said.
“This project will enable us to have the collaborative approach that is needed, as we must ensure that there is clear contact with the Gender and Child Affairs Ministry and Children’s Authority, at all times.
“Victims of domestic violence and human trafficking, are in need of the type of support that will require the efforts of multiple stakeholders, inclusive of the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service, local government and the ministry of labour, all who are fully on board with this initiative. It takes a village to truly tackle this issue effectively.”
Cox also said the meeting was important as there is a "great sense of urgency surrounding the care and protection of vulnerable children at present.
“A collaborative approach is important, particularly where shelters and housing facilities are concerned, since there are many instances of single parents with children who need affordable, low income housing to assist in the transitioning process."
Webster-Roy said she was committed to help support Cox's ministry’s efforts.
Cox said her ministry was already in contact with the Housing Development Corporation (HDC) on low-income homes to support its clients.
Cox was accompanied by her chief technical officer Michael Reid, deputy director of social welfare Christine Guy and deputy director of the national family services division Kathleen Sarkar. Permanent Secretary at the OPM (Gender and Child Affairs) Jacqueline Johnson also attended.