25th November is the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women as designated by UNGA. The day intends on inviting governments, international organizations and NGOs to organize activities designed to raise public awareness of the problem. Women’s activists have marked this day against violence since 1981. This date came from the brutal assassination in 1960, of the three Mirabal sisters, political activists in the Dominican Republic, on orders of Dominican ruler Rafael Trujillo (1930-1961). On 20 December 1993 the General Assembly passed a resolution adopting the Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women.
This year Ban Ki-moon, the Secretary General of United Nations has started a UNiTE Campaign which will continue for 16 days till Human Rights Day on 10th December, 2014. Apart from this he has also urged everyone to observe 25th of every month as Orange day inviting to wear something orange to highlight its calls for the eradication of violence against women without reservation, equivocation or delay.
Fiinovation believes that violence against women is a human right violation. This issue is global pandemic and up to 70% women experience violence in their lifetime. Hence it is crucial to create awareness and stop discrimination and violence against women. It is important for all governments to act against this a human rights issue and enforce strong laws punishing culprits. Women need to raise their voice against violence as well. It becomes tough to provide justice to victims if they choose to remain silent, especially in rural areas where awareness about domestic violence, marital rapes and other such issues remains very low.
Fiinovation urges all nations to adopt the UNiTE Goals which are:
- Adoption and enforcement of national laws to address and punish all forms of violence against women and girls, in line with international human rights standards.
- Adoption and implementation of multi-sectoral national action plans that emphasize prevention and that are adequately resourced.
- Establishment of data collection and analysis systems on the prevalence of various forms of violence against women and girls.
- Establishment of national and/or local campaigns and the engagement of a diverse range of civil society actors in preventing violence and in supporting women and girls who have been abused.
- Systematic efforts to address sexual violence in conflict situations and to protect women and girls from rape as a tactic of war and full implementation of related laws and policies
“Break the silence. When you witness violence against women and girls, do not sit back. Act.” – Ban Ki-moon, UN Secretary General
By Rahul Choudhury
Media Team – Fiinovation