Wednesday, December 4, 2013

International Day for Elimination of Violence Against Women

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  • The United Nations General Assembly has designated November 25 as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.
  • The premise of the day is to raise awareness of the fact that women around the world are subject to rape, domestic violence and other forms of violence; furthermore, one of the aims of the day is to highlight that the scale and true nature of the issue is often hidden.
  • For 2013, the official theme framed by the UN Secretary-General’s campaign UNiTE to End Violence against Women, is Orange the World in 16 Days.

  • Historically, the date is based on date of the 1960 assassination of the three Mirabal sisters, political activists in the Dominican Republic; the killings were ordered by Dominican dictator Rafael Trujillo (1930–1961).
  • In 1981, activists marked November 25 as a day to combat and raise awareness of violence against women more broadly; on December 17, 1999, the date received its official United Nations (UN) resolution.
  • The UN and the Inter-Parliamentary Union have encouraged governments, international organizations and NGOs to organize activities to support the day as an international observance.
  • For example, the UNIFEM (United Nations Development Fund for Women) observes the day each year and offers suggestions for other organizations to observe it.
  • The date of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women also marks the start of the “16 Days of Activism” that precedes Human Rights Day on December 10 each year.
UN FIGURES:
  • Up to 70 per cent of women experience violence in their lifetime.
  • Between 500,000 to 2 million people are trafficked annually into situations including prostitution, forced labour, slavery or servitude, according to estimates. Women and girls account for about 80 per cent of the detected victims
  • It is estimated that more than 130 million girls and women alive today have undergone FGM/C, mainly in Africa and some Middle Eastern countries.
  • The cost of intimate partner violence in the United States alone exceeds $5.8 billion per year: $4.1 billion is for direct medical and health care services, while productivity losses account for nearly $1.8 billion.

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