The day has finally arrived. The opening session of the Commission on the Status of Women officially got underway a little after 10am EST. Ms Marjon Kamara, Chair of the CSW, from Liberia said that ‘expectations were for agreed results that governments can take back to make concrete actions.’ She continued, ‘violence exists in each and every country’ and that we need a ‘solid, practical and convincing outcome’. In the diplomatic language of the UN she made a strong statement that there is ‘one clear message that the current situation on violence against women in unacceptable’. I would probably state it a little less diplomatically than that, rather that it is outrageous and scandalous. With one in four women in the UK suffering abuse in her lifetime, and two women a week being killed by their partner or former partner, it is indeed time for action.
Later Ms Kamara added as more of an instruction than a statement that, ‘the words we speak will be transformed into action on the ground to bring real and meaningful change.’ She also paid tribute to the many people who had made it ‘their life’s mission to end violence against women. I salute you.’
Following on from the Chair of the Commission was Dep Secretary General who stated that ‘ending violence against women is a matter of life and death’. He continued with challenging the shame and stigma around violence against women stating ‘we have to create a culture where shame around these crimes is placed solely on the perpetrators.’ He went on to encourage everyone to play their part in ending violence against women, ‘everybody can’t do everything, but everybody can do something’.
More in the next blog but for the moment taking what the Dep Sec Gen said, what is the something that you can do?
Resources and Info:
Church Pack on ending domestic abuse http://www.restoredrelationships.org/resources/info/51
See the Church Times news article on the Church of England at the UN CSW here http://www.churchtimes.co.uk/articles/2013/1-march/news/world/church-joins-in-as-un-bids-to-end-violence-against-women