A female officer of the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) has come forward with detailed instances of her being sexually harassed by her senior male counterparts. The identity of the woman is being withheld to protect her privacy.
The woman spoke with The Star and revealed that she has been putting up with daily harassment from superiors since her initiation into the JDF, which was way over a decade ago. The allegations that were recently made (implicating a high-ranking JDF soldier), which may be a startling revelation to the public, were described as “not surprising” by the female officer giving her testimony.
She stated that she has been repeatedly harassed by a specific senior who could not take no for an answer after she refused his sexual advances multiple times. Detailing an incident where there was a gross misuse of authority, she remarked that this officer used unidentified means to acquire her personal information and began harassing her by constantly calling her cellphone.
According to her attestation, she was turning in one night when her phone suddenly rang and she found her superior on the other end, making sounds that indicated that he was in the midst of pleasuring himself.
“I was laying down in my bunk. Just as I was dosing off my phone rang. I answered my phone and this man was on my phone masturbating and making a whole lot of sexual noise in my ears. I was so frightened I wake up somebody that was laying next to me and I said, ‘Listen to this, listen to this’ and the person tell me that that’s him. I said ‘How you know it’s him?’ And she say ‘Because he do the same thing to me’”, she divulged about her recount of that night.
On a separate occasion, she spoke about how he indirectly requested anal sex from her by telling a fellow female co-worker of hers to pass on the message. She noted that although she reported the sexual harassment she was being subjected to on a daily basis, it was all in vain. She also voiced that because she wanted to stand up for herself by reporting the harassment, she received harsh and bigoted treatment in return.
Although the JDF has made repeated claims about how strict they are with reports of sexual harassment or assault in its ranks, it is uncertain if the testament of this particular female officer has ever been investigated.