Organisation Internationale de Droit du Développement

16 Days of Activism against Gender-based Violence - 2021

25 nov 2021

Violence against women and girls remains devastatingly pervasive. Across their lifetime, some 736 million women worldwide – approximately 1 in 3 – are subjected to physical or sexual violence by an intimate partner or sexual violence from a non-partner. During the COVID-19 pandemic, cases of gender-based violence (GBV) saw a sharp rise, with the global economic downturn, school closures and national lockdowns triggering a “shadow pandemic” of increased reported violence against women and girls. In 2020, IDLO together with partners documented major challenges to women’s access to justice in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, including intimate partner violence and other forms of GBV.

Combatting gender-based violence is a key objective under IDLO’s Strategic Plan 2021-2024.  IDLO has been working around the world in countries such as Honduras, Mali, Mexico, Myanmar, Somalia, and Tunisia to combat gender-based violence, focusing on strengthening the capacity of justice sector institutions, formal or informal, to respond to GBV; increasing women's legal empowerment to access justice and claim their rights; and combatting discriminatory laws and ensuring the emergence of gender-responsive legal and institutional frameworks to address GBV. 

Recognizing the urgency to combat gender-based violence, IDLO joined the Generation Equality Forum, in particular the Action Coalition on Gender-based Violence to help catalyze tangible results in the next five years. As a Commitment Maker, we pledged to adopt an integrated approach to addressing GBV against women and girls focused on strengthening gender-responsive justice. IDLO also joined UN Women, UNODC and other partners in two collective commitments on increasing access to essential services for survivors of gender-based violence and implementing and scaling up gender-responsive policing.

Our response: How we address GBV in various countries around the world

In Tunisia, IDLO has supported the establishment of a support network to facilitate the economic participation of GBV survivors. Initially designed to reach about 160 women beneficiaries from the governorates of Kef and Grand Tunis, the network is expanding though the creation of a mobile app launched by IDLO in cooperation with the Ministry of Women, Family and Children. Responding to the increase in domestic violence in the context of COVID-19, IDLO also supported a newly created dedicated helpline to provide legal information and advice on gender-based violence. See also…

In Mongolia, IDLO launched a law clinic for survivors of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) and has supported the development and operation of a CSO referral network for survivors. Moreover, expanding its work on child rights, IDLO is supporting specialized children’s rights committees to provide legal and other services to child victims and witnesses in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, and is developing children’s workbooks on child rights and reference material for parents of children with disabilities. See also… 

In Mali, as part of our multi-country program in the Sahel region, IDLO is strengthening the capacity of criminal justice actors to respond to gender-based violence and working to improve the quality of justice services to make them more efficient, transparent, and accessible to citizens. As part of these efforts, IDLO supported the establishment and operation of Consultation and Coordination Groups (Cadres de Concertation, or CdCs), informal committees coordinating localized solutions among state criminal justice chain actors, civil society organizations, and local and traditional authorities. Due to the work of the CdCs in Mali, nearly 3,000 female victims of GBV were able to access information, professional advice, or services, including in the justice system. More…

In Somalia, IDLO is supporting the formalization and standardization of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) processes based on local traditional justice mechanisms (Xeer), including for handling and/or referring cases of GBV and the protection of survivors, to promote fair and equitable access to justice, particularly for women and marginalized groups. IDLO’s research, Accessing Justice: Somalia's Alternative Dispute Resolution Centers, identified gaps and areas for improvement on gender equality in the ADR processes and provided recommendations and action areas for future ADR policies and programming. More…

In Uganda, as part of its Community Justice Programme (CJP), IDLO is providing technical support to formal institutions, such as the Judiciary, Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, Uganda Police Force and Uganda Prison Service through capacity building in of GBV case management. IDLO also supports CSO partners in conducting research on specific forms of GBV; providing gender-responsive legal aid services to GBV survivors; and strengthening referrals and accountability mechanisms.

In Kenya, IDLO has been working with key institutions such as the Judiciary, State Department of Gender Affairs, and National Gender Equality Commission to strengthen legal and policy frameworks for combatting GBV at both national and county levels. Examples of policy frameworks developed in partnership with IDLO include: (i) the National Policy on the Prevention and Protection from Unlawful Sexual Acts and the Administration of Justice in Sexual Offences Matters; (ii) the National Policy on the Eradication of Female Genital Mutilation; (iii) the Meru Sexual and Gender-Based Violence Policy, based on a model law and policy on SGBV for County Governments; and (iv) Guidelines for the Establishment of GBV Recovery Centres in all health facilities in Kenya. IDLO is also working with county-level governments to improve access to justice in GBV cases. In addition, IDLO is engaging with the National Council on the Administration of Justice on the development of a centralized system for criminal justice actors to facilitate data collection and documentation of GBV cases.

This year’s UNiTE campaign in support of 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence aims to mobilize all stakeholders to advocate for inclusive, comprehensive and long-term strategies, programmes and resources to prevent and eliminate violence against women and girls wherever it occurs, prioritizing those most marginalized, under the theme “Orange the World: END VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN NOW!”. 

IDLO supports the UNiTE campaign and reaffirms our Generation Equality Commitments to combat violence against women and girls.

On this day in 1991, activists at the Women’s Global Leadership Institute launched the inaugural 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence (GBV). The campaign, calling for the prevention and elimination of GBV, has garnered support from over 6000 organisations in almost 200 countries.
 
 
Survivor-centered Justice: Why Is It Essential for Ending Gender-based Violence? Published by the Global Women’s Institute in collaboration with the International Development Law Organization (IDLO) As researchers, advocates, and practitioners...
 
 
The Generation Equality Action Coalitions are global, innovative, multi-stakeholder partnerships that are mobilizing governments, civil society, international organizations, and the private sector to catalyze...
 
 

 

 

Learn more about IDLO's work to combat gender-based violence

Violence against women has long been recognized as a global epidemic, and the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly escalated threats to women’s safety, security and access to justice. The devastating ripple effects of the virus such as overburdened...
 
 
Amid the pandemic, IDLO is working around the world to eliminate gender-based violence in all its forms. With approaches tailored to the local context, IDLO is adapting existing interventions and innovating new components of programming to ensure justice for women is not derailed during this crisis.
 
 
Tunisia adopted its first national procedure manual for women’s shelters, as a result of IDLO’s program to enhance women’s protection against gender-based violence. This work was made possible by funding from the Government of Italy. The manual...
 
 
IDLO and the Municipality of San Pedro Sula in Honduras have launched an awareness campaign on city services available to survivors of gender-based, domestic and intra-familial violence, with information on what constitutes violence, how to avoid it...
 
 
In the post-conflict transition, significant steps have been taken to combat sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) in Liberia. The Government of Liberia established a policy and legal framework that includes the Rape Law (2006), a National Gender...
 
 
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