The National Commission for Women (NCW) today kick started a project series, ‘Training Programme of Protection Officers in addressing Domestic Violence’ in collaboration with Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration (LBSNAA) to address the specific needs of Protection Officers in responding to survivors of domestic violence. The inaugural function was virtually attended by Union Minister for Women and Child Development ,Smt Smriti Zubin Irani, Chairperson NCW, Ms Rekha Sharma, Shri Lok Ranjan, Director, LBSNAA and Chairperson, National Gender & Child Centre and Smt. Disha Pannu. The training aims to focus on the role of different stakeholders/service providers under the Act including police, legal aid services, health system, service providers, shelter services, one stop centres etc. Smt. Smriti Irani in her inaugural address lauded the initiative taken by National Commission for Women. Shesaid that Protection Officers bridge the gap between administration and justice for aggrieved women and it should be their priority to make it possible for the victims to access all the legal rights available to her. The Minister congratulated the NCW leadership for working 24/7 especially during the pandemic to help women in distress. She appreciated the various programs initiated by the Commission such as its helpline for pregnant women and the present initiative to train Protection Officers.In her address, Chairperson NCW, Smt. Rekha Sharma shed light on the importance of the role of Protection Officers, who act as a facilitator between the aggrieved woman and the court. She said that the Protection Officer aids the aggrieved woman in filing of complaints, and application before the Magistrate to obtain the necessary relief and also assists to obtain medical aid, legal aid, counselling, safe shelter and other required assistance. She also said that the participants will gain the understanding of the legal system, Role of Protection Officers and interlinkage with other stakeholders for better implementation of the Act in the training sessions. The training will also focus on change of stereotypic mindset and understand the impact of domestic violence on survivors and their children.The five-day training programme scheduled from June 28 to July 2nd is first in the series of workshops to be subsequently held for Protection Officers from the three States of Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and West Bengal. The training has been scheduled online considering the current pandemic situation.