Sexual Violence: A Global Pandemic
Written by Sabah Batul
Sexual violence is a global pandemic. One in three women experiences sexual or physical violence – most likely from their intimate partner, according to a report from the World Health Organization. There is an urgent need to increase sensitization regarding sexual violence and the awareness of consent and sexual violence amongst persons at large. In this series, we examine sexual violence and related issues that have come up in the news, on a weekly basis, published every Saturday. This is an attempt to improve awareness regarding incidents of sexual violence and related matters, so that we, as a society can take steps towards collective action to reduce its incidence. It is an effort to ensure that we acknowledge the rampant sexual violence that exists, lest we forget.
This issue looks at 20th October to 27th October 2018.
- India asks UN to penalise terrorists for sexual violence
Sexual assault and abductions during the war are used as a tool, and women are the majority of the victims. India has asked UN Security Council to sanction these perpetrators and entities. Paulomi Tripathi, First Secretary in India’s Permanent Mission told UN chief Antonio Guterres that an increase in such brutalities has been reported.
“India stands ready to engage with our partners to work towards ensuring the meaningful participation of women and mainstreaming of women, peace and security considerations for building inclusive, peaceful and resilient societies,” Tripathi said.
- The dreaded music festivals
Music festivals are a hub for sexual assault. University of New South Wales and the University of Western Sydney in Australia conducted a survey of 500 people on their understanding of safety and sexual violence at festivals. The results were meek. Yet not much research has been done to curb this issue.
- An effort to fight sexual violence
An event held at Alice Springs women’s shelter, Australia, invited women to a safe space to ‘Reclaim the night’. The event is organised by the Central Australian Family Violence and Sexual Assault Network (CAFVSAN), along with five organisations including the Tangentyere Women’s Family Safety Group, and the Alice Springs Women’s Shelter.
“Break the silence and the violence,” said Tully McIntyre from the Alice Springs Women’s Shelter.
- Sexual violence is a punishable crime
A child killer, John Taylor, has been given life term for a 20-year campaign of sexual violence. Taylor was convicted for the murder of Leanne Tiernan, in Leeds, England in 2000. But before murdering the woman, Taylor had carried out vile acts of violence against the 16-year-old to inflict pain and for sexual gratification. He has also committed multiple offences against five women and children, including a seven-year-old. Listening to the horrid details of his sadistic doings, Judge Robin Mairs told Taylor, he will die in jail.
- Unpaid leave for victims
Victims of sexual violence are likely to have access to 10 days of unpaid leave under changes to legislation in Canada. These days off would be an aid for the victims as they can seek medical attention, psychological or victim services support, or legal assistance, or those who need to appear in court or must relocate. The government of Saskatchewan says it will amend The Saskatchewan Employment Act. This truly is a much-needed victory for the victims of sexual assault, and the most humane solution.
- #Me Too Movement in India
The #MeToo Movement in India has been surprising and empowering at the same time. Although women are finally speaking up, a few false allegations also raise concerns.
This emancipating wave has taken over India yet according to a survey only 69% support the movement and 34% believe the victims would get justice.
A survey also says that 45% of those surveyed were concerned that the accusations could be false, while 21% of mostly women, felt the movement will not lead to any justice.
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