Spiritual abuse defined at workshop


CONTROLLING and stopping family members from going to churches of their choice is an offence, according to family sexual violence action committee deputy national coordinator Isi Oru.
He said power and the need to control was at the root of family and sexual violence.
Oru said this at the media learning workshop on gender-based violence and juvenile delinquency in Port Moresby yesterday.
He said this particular offence was defined as spiritual abuse.
“Spiritual abuse is a form of domestic violence and domestic violence in itself it is a crime,” he said.
The Family Protection Act covered the use of power to control another person.
“In the family Protection Act, the meaning of domestic violence is expanded to capture spiritual violence as well,” Oru said.
“Spiritual abuse is about power and control, because someone uses their power and control to deprive another person in a relationship, the free will to practice whatever he or she believes in terms of religious beliefs or spiritual beliefs.
“Spiritual abuse in the context of family and sexual violence is about depriving someone’s right to practise their religious or spiritual believes.”
He said it was categorised under gender-based violence or domestic violence or family and sexual violence as an abuse.