Today is International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women. And not a moment too soon. All around the world today there will be marches, exhibitions, symposiums, all manner of important events to help bring about a better understanding of the ways in which Violence Against Women is perpetrated and the devastating effect it has on women.
Today also marks the beginning of 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence which is an international human rights campaign to raise awareness and encourage action to help end violence against women. The 16 Days begin on November 25th and ends on December 10 – International Human Rights day, to emphasize the fact that #VAW is a human rights issue.
Women have a right to be free from violence; from abuse by their intimate partners, sexual violence, trafficking and murder. But women are not only subject to violence from individuals, they are often subject to violence from the media, the legislature and even the state.
Over the next #16Days we will discuss these various types of violence and hear from extraordinary everyday folks who are doing what they can to help end gender-based violence.
What can YOU do?
YOU can exercise your own personal leadership in helping to change the pervasive cultural inertia around VAW issues and challenge the destructive messages and thinking which blames women for the violence perpetrated against them.
For a start you can reblog and share our posts and participate in our discussions on twitter and facebook. Moreover, you can start your own conversations with friends and take the initiative to find out and share information about Crisis Hotlines, Services and legal recourse for women and men who have suffered gender-based violence.
We also hope that some of you will be inspired by the work of our activists and discover ways to use your special talents and abilities to contribute to making the Caribbean, and the world a safer, freer and more just place for women and girls.