Residents of an informal settlement in Nakuru town have raised an alarm over increased violence in their locality.
In an interview with KNA, the area chief John Korir said poverty and poor quality of basic social services such as healthcare, education and lack of jobs has aggravated the situation.
He said the collapse of a number of industries such as Milling Corporation of Kenya, Eveready and Spin Knit has intensified social inequalities, marginalization and exclusion, which has pushed many youth into crime.
He said violence has significant negative consequences including erosion of social cohesion, trauma, broken families, injuries, deaths and loss of property.
The administrator added that sexual and gender-based violence against children has also increased attributing the trend to hard economic times, which enhances disagreements in families.
He urged the government to consider extending social security services to widows and widowers because their coping mechanism was particularly harder due to a loss of assistance from their deceased spouses.
A gender expert Dr. Lillian Cheskaw said hard economic periods tend to fuel domestic violence since the breadwinners start perceiving their families as a burden.
She appealed to policymakers to take into account the impact of lack of consistent incomes at households’ levels was bound to increase insecurity in the country and which starts at the household level.
By Veronica Bosibori