Media release – International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women

MARUAH has released the following media release.

Also see links below

  1. media report on MARUAH media release
  2. UN website on International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women

International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women
25 November 2012

On 17 December 1999, the United Nations General Assembly designated 25 November as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women; it was the same date as 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).

Women’s organisations as well as human rights activists around the world have marked 25 November as a day against violence since 1981.
In Singapore, MARUAH joins women’s organisations in remembering this day and calls on all Singaporeans in whatever strata of society to eschew all forms of violence against women here. We call for the strengthening of civil and social safeguards to prevent violence against women and for increased awareness that violence against women is unacceptable and deplorable.

We support the call made by Association of Women for Action and Research (AWARE) and the Singapore Council of Women’s Organisations to have a law to protect women and men against sexual harassment. When there are no provisions under the law currently to recognise sexual harassment, the State is obliged under its commitment to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, to protect women and men by, in this case, providing such protection through a law that will clarify on the definition of sexual harassment and also institute remedial measures. We urge the government to protect women and men by instituting such a law to protect them against sexual harassment.

We also ask that Gender Studies be part of a curriculum for children in schools so that they have better opportunities to understand gender relations and violence against women, girls and boys.

Ms Braema Mathi, President of MARUAH says, “No human being should be subjected to any form of abuse – physical, sexual, psychological. It destroys their self-esteem and it takes many years of hard work to rebuild a person. The law signals on what is unacceptable behaviour. As members of this society we should develop a Zero-tolerance to any form of violence against women and girls.”
MARUAH also supports the position taken by United Nations’ Secretary General Ban Ki-moon when he says that “Millions of women and girls around the world are assaulted, beaten, raped, mutilated or even murdered in what constitutes appalling violations of their human rights.

We must fundamentally challenge the culture of discrimination that allows violence to continue. On this International Day, I call on all governments to make good on their pledges to end all forms of violence against women and girls in all parts of the world, and I urge all people to support this important goal.”

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