Five years ago, the global #MeToo movement brought new urgency and visibility to the extent of violence against women and girls. Millions of survivors came forward to share their experience. They forced the world to recognise a reality that shames every one of us. Their courage and voice led to a powerful collective activism and a sea-change in awareness.
As we now have entered the 21st century, we must end violence against girls and women. Attacking and abusing girls and women as a means of warfare, the war-machinery or domestic violence as a result of crisis, is absolutely abhorrent and unacceptable. Exposing half of the world’s population to the risks of violence because of their gender is not only a violation of international and domestic laws, but a disgraceful and brute breach of our very own humanity.
Violence against women has failed to decline in the Latin American region after the sharp rise recorded during the COVID-19 pandemic, while preventing the causes of such violence remains a major challenge.
Violence against women is a global crisis, prevalent in every community and society around the world. Globally, estimates published by WHO
indicate that about 1 in 3 (30%) of women worldwide have been subjected to either physical and/or sexual intimate partner violence or non-partner sexual violence in their lifetime. Yet, there is limited coordination and insufficient funding to truly address the scale of the issue.
Constance Okollet Achom, a Ugandan woman from Tororo, a rural village located in Eastern Uganda, has helped several dozens of her peers affected by domestic violence to address the issue by equipping victims with skillsets to manufacture eco-friendly biofuels from agro-forestry waste.
The United States, which recently laid down a set of guidelines to monitor sexual exploitation and abuse (SEA) by US citizens in international organizations, including the United Nations and its agencies worldwide, has implicitly accused the UN of faltering on a high-profile case last month.
Whether to have children or not is one of the most life-altering decisions a person can make.
But as UNFPA’s 2022 State of World Population
report shows, people around the world – especially women and members of marginalized groups – are frequently denied any choice in the matter, with partners, relatives, health care providers and even governments making or strongly influencing these decisions.
The U.S. Government has recently published 'Engagement Principles' on Protection from Sexual Exploitation Abuse & Sexual Harassment within International Organizations', and while any involvement from Member States is to be encouraged, these principles do not address the fundamental need for either deterrence or for accountability.
Calling it “so disappointing and disheartening” in social media on 17 October, Dr. Rosie James, a British medical expert, announced that “I was sexually assaulted by a World Health Organization (WHO) staff tonight at the World Health Summit.”
That’s why a new ship with a big white “E” will navigate the Mediterranean Sea. The vessel has a red hull, is more than fifty meters long and has low decks. Soon, it will leave the port of Genoa and go out into the open sea. If those living on the north shore of that ‘water cemetery’ bearing the name of Mediterranean had chosen life, the "Life Support" would not have been greeted by the applause of a people packed square, on a late summer night, in the Italian city of Reggio Emilia. It would not be ready to sail now; . if they had chosen life, that ship would have another job.
"My father was very ‘machista’, he used to beat my mother... It was a very sad life," said Dionisio Ticuña, a resident of the rural community of Canincunca, on the outskirts of the town of Huaro, in the southern Peruvian highlands region of Cuzco more than 3,000 meters above sea level.
This year commemorates the 10th anniversary of the International Day of the Girl Child. While the last decade has seen greater attention on the positive development needs of girls, we must move beyond documenting the barriers that girls face to investing in and prioritizing girl-centered solutions to the critical development challenges of our world.
The Padre Carlos Mugica neighborhood looks like another city within the Argentine capital, which most people usually see from up above as they drive past on the freeway but have never visited. It is a shantytown in the heart of Buenos Aires, of enormous vitality and where women are organizing to confront the various forms of violence that affect them.
Child marriage continues to be a scourge in many African countries – despite legislation and efforts of many, including parliamentarians, to keep girls in school and create brighter futures for them. This was the view of participants in a recent webinar held under the auspices of the African Parliamentary Forum on Population and Development (FPA) and UNFPA East and Southern Africa Regional Office (ESARO).
Schools, students and teachers continue to be targeted and attacked in countries around the world. Over the past two years, we have seen a substantial increase in the number of attacks on education. Innocent children, adolescents and teachers are being killed, raped and abducted. Schools and universities are bombed, burned down and used for military purposes. Girls and boys are too scared to walk to school and face intimidation and other attacks. These are severe breaches of international humanitarian law and ultimately – and absolutely – inhumane.
Parliamentarians play a decisive role in addressing population issues, as was demonstrated when the majority voted against a private member motion to end the teaching of comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) in Zambia in 2020.
Afghanistan is where history has taken it! The Trump-Taliban "Agreement for Bringing Peace to Afghanistan," signed on 29 February 2020, is deemed by many as the submission of a superpower to a group that had perpetrated acts of extreme ferocity and terror.
As we approach this year’s Transforming Education Summit
, global leaders can and must prioritize expertise and mobilize political will to support efforts to ensure inclusive and quality education for all, especially girls. This is at the heart of Sustainable Development Goal 4
in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, as well as the commitments made in the Charlevoix Declaration
and the G7 Declaration on Girls’ Education
In the year that has passed since the Taliban’s takeover in Afghanistan we have seen daily and continuous deterioration in the situation of Afghan women and girls. This has spanned every aspect of their human rights, from living standards to social and political status.
It is often those least responsible for causing climate change that suffer the most from the impacts. And such is the case with women and girls in Malawi - one of the world’s poorest and lowest carbon-emitting countries but ranked fifth in the Global Climate Index 2021
list of nations worst affected by climate-related extreme weather.
This is an alert message: if nothing stops the wave of violence in Mexico, by the end of 2024 the country could exceed the figure of 150,000 missing persons.