Advocate Morris tasked to monitor GBV cases in Court Watching Brief Unit
The Minister of Community Safety, Albert Fritz, welcomes the appointment of Advocate Leslie Morris from the Department of Community Safety to monitor Gender Based Violence (GBV) and Domestic Violence (DV) cases within the Court Watching Brief (CWB) unit. Please see photo of Advocate Morris attached.
Advocate Morris has been tasked with addressing GBV and DV related cases as he has a wealth of experience, having served the Department and CWB Unit for 8 years. He is passionate about addressing these social ills and has, in his own spare time:
- Established a Departmental guideline on how to obtain a protection order. This guideline will inform a larger communications campaign by the Department to address GBV and DV; and
- Held numerous workshops within rural communities such as Vanrhynsdorp, Lutzille, Klawer, Tulbagh and others on what DV is and how to obtain a protection order.
Advocate Morris said, “In my role, I hope to go beyond monitoring cases and towards advocacy. We must empower women with the knowledge of their rights, particularly in cases of DV and GBV. Whether you live in Constantia or Lutzville, it is important that you know your rights and be treated by SAPS with the basic respect that you deserve. My work conducted within the Unit will not be limited to the Metropole but will also assist those in rural communities alike.”
Minister Fritz said, “Going forward the Department will establish a standard operating procedure for all GBV related cases, this will entail working closely with SAPS to ensure better information sharing on related cases. I welcome the tasking of Advocate Morris to monitor related cases. His empathy and legal expertise will go a long way in bringing guilty parties to book and ensuring the safety of women in our society.”
The Department’s CWB unit monitors criminal cases struck off the court roll as a result of possible SAPS inefficiencies. CWB members conduct physical visits to courts and are required to listen to the proceedings to identify inefficiencies in relation to the investigation or trial. Where cases are struck off the court roll because of systemic failures, these are captured and reported to the Provincial Commissioner to ensure remedial action is taken to finalise these cases or institute disciplinary action, where necessary.
The CWB Unit was recognised for service delivery excellence at the 17th annual Impumelelo Awards Ceremony in November 2017. In the 2019/20 financial year, the Unit attended to 846 cases.
Minister Fritz said, “The Department of Community Safety remains committed not only to performing oversight but contributing to the safety of all residents. Should you wish to liaise with the CWB unit, you can call 021 483 7863 or email Adv. Morris on Leslie.Morris@westerncape.gov.za.”
For more information on the CWB Unit, please visit: https://www.westerncape.gov.za/general-publication/court-watching-briefs
Attention broadcasters, English audio clip available here: https://clyp.it/5gxgx3tx