The new Sexual Offences Act 2010 will benefit women and children substantially, as they are known to be the vast majority of victims of sexual abuse. Its main objective is to stamp out sexual violence. It details a wide range of sexual offences which include, rape, sexual assault, sexual activity with a person with a mental disability - and provides a definition of these activities. A number of new offences reflecting the advances in society e.g. voyeurism, grooming, as well as advances in the status of women have been taken into consideration.
Penalties prescribed by this Act are severe in recognition of the gravity of the offences and they are expected to serve as a deterrent. To ensure the effectiveness of the enforcement and application of the law provision has been made in the Act for the practices and procedures to be adopted by the police and the judiciary.
The use of new procedures such as audio visual links for witnesses has been legalized under this Act. It also bears noting that the Act contains a provision for the rehabilitation of perpetrators of sexual offences.
Source of Information
Response of the Government of Guyana to the questionnaire on violence against women 2010