Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) Leader Philip Brave Davis yesterday suggested that women walk in groups and carry mace to protect themselves from violent crimes.
Davis also defended his statement that the government should provide women with whistles.
“We suggest to our citizens – avoid dimly-lit areas,” he said.
“We suggest that tall street lights should be functional. Women are encouraged to travel in groups. The perimeter of vacant lots should be cleared so that it is not used as a hideout for would-be assailants.
“We need all components of MARCO’s law fully implemented, including the public alert system and a sex offender registry.
“We introduced swift justice and this must be further developed and enhanced.”
Davis added, “We suggest the carrying of deterrents on your person such as mace and/or alarm. Many police jurisdictions promote and encourage women to use a whistle as an alarm to draw public attention to their distress.”
“My suggestion of a whistle was not plucked out of thin air. If they were to research the issue of an alarm when persons are in distress, they would find that a survival kit that is given and suggested for women to have on them, it includes a whistle. You check in England, the United States and several jurisdictions, they all recommend that a whistle, some sort of an alarm, be included in a survivor’s kit.”
On Tuesday, during the party’s monthly press conference at its headquarters, PLP Leader Philip Brave Davis called on the government to provide complimentary safety whistles to women and children.
The comments led to backlash yesterday with dozens taking to social media to express their criticism as memes ridiculing the suggestion made the rounds online. One meme, in particular, depicted Davis with a gun held to his head and a whistle in his mouth.
Davis yesterday responded to the backlash.
“The FNM trolls are making light of the issue of what is happening with our crime situation today,” Davis said in response.
“And this is no joke.”
He added, “This is not about me or the PLP, but about the proliferation of crime against women and girls and the constitutional responsibility of the government to protect the safety of its citizens. Secondly, crime is not and will never be a joke, as the FM and its minions seem to think. Thirdly, is the government doing enough to protect its citizens?
“Well, the women who are victims of crime do not think so, nor do they believe that it is a joke. Their family and friends do not think so.”