WUNRN - GENDER HARMONY INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE - For 16 DAYS OF ACTIVISM AGAINST GENDER VIOLENCE

Published by admin on Sat, 12/05/2015 - 23:42 in

Women’s UN Report Network - WUNRN

 

GENDER HARMONY INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE

For 16 DAYS OF ACTIVISM AGAINST GENDER VIOLENCE

 

Jakarta, Indonesia – November 25, 2015

 

WUNRN, The Women’s UN Report Network, is honored to be a co-sponsor of this Gender Harmony International Conference. WUNRN, based on a UN Study, addresses the human rights, oppression, and empowerment of women and girls all over the world.

 

Today is the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. We gather together not only to address gender violence, but to celebrate Gender Harmony, a Promising Tool to End Violence against Women, to address gender violence.

 

The United Nations designated November 25 as the International Day on Violence against Women as it was the anniversary date of the murder of the 3 Mirabal Sisters in the Dominican Republic. These 3 young women were dedicated activists for democracy and human rights, against dictatorship, but were killed fighting for their cause of social justice.

 

Gender Harmony provides research-based methods for reducing violence, for peace, dignity and respect of women and men, girls and boys. Gender Harmony is Non-Violence. Gender Harmony supports positive relationships for the couple, the family, the community, and the country. In today’s complex and volatile world, we are faced with conflicts, climate crises, economic upheavals, natural disasters, family fragmentation, and a sense of insecurity about the future. But, Gender Harmony can lead to reduction of all forms of violence, and lead to more personal and collective peace.

 

The relationship, the family, is the core of society. By building communication and respect, the family, small or large, rural or urban, can employ gender harmony to become more resilient and to be stronger community citizens. Gender Harmony works with women AND men, the family unit, to learn to celebrate goodness and bonding, to talk through challenges, to be supportive of self and each other. 

 

Indonesia has taken a leadership human rights position by supporting the growth of Gender Harmony as a tool against gender violence. In a country with diverse islands, climate, customs and traditions, economic conditions, Gender Harmony can reach to the young, inspire ALL generations to build a more just, more stable and satisfying society.

 

UN Women calls Violence against Women a Global Pandemic. It is violence against families, communities, nations, and humanity. It is a threat to international peace and security. Today, on this International Day on Violence against Women, we must speak out and be part of creating solutions to end gender violence; and indeed, we are here at this Conference to explore the many ways in which Gender Harmony can be an effective way to reduce, to eliminate gender violence.

 

Violence against women occurs in the Public and Private Spheres. Intimate partner violence can be exceedingly painful and erode trust, commitment, love. There are laws on violence against women, but they are not easy to enforce. There may not be Due Diligence. And, law enforcement is often hesitant to enter the private sphere. Further, in a patriarchal world, women may be dominated and repeatedly victimized, with inadequate support or mechanisms to rebuild relationships and family. 

 

1 in 3 women worldwide has experienced physical or sexual violence, mostly by an intimate partner.

 

Other forms of gender violence include rape, physical and emotional violence, sexual harassment, stalking, acid attacks, trafficking, female genital mutilation, forced and child marriage, and more. 4.5 million people are victims sexual exploitation, and 98% of them are women and girls.

 

So today, on this International Day on the Elimination of Violence Against Women 2015, and as we learn more about Gender Harmony, as this concept continues to fine tune and expand to show impressive successes against gender violence, let us consider some serious and significant rhetorical questions:

 

WHAT IS THE MOST RISKY, DANGEROUS HUMAN SITUATION IN THIS WORLD ?     TO BE A WOMAN

 

WHAT GROUP OF PEOPLE IN TODAY’S WORLD SUFFER THE MOST PERSECUTION ? GIRLS  

 

WHY IS VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN & GIRLS SO GLOBALLY PREVALENT, YEAR AFTER YEAR, IN SPITE OF LAWS & COUNTRY COMMITMENTS ?

 

WHY DO MEN OFTEN CHOOSE NOT TO PARTICIPATE IN PROGRAMS AND INITIATIVES TO END VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN ?

 

WHY DOES VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN CONTINUE TO BE A WEAPON OF WAR ?

 

WHEN STATES HAVE AN OBLIGATION UNDER INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS LAW TO INVESTIGATE & PROSECUTE HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATIONS AND PROVIDE REMEDY FOR VICTIMS, WHY SO OFTEN, PERVASIVELY, DOES THIS NOT HAPPEN ?  

 

WHY DO NEGATIVE GENDER STEREOTYPES EXACERBATE  DISRESPECT, INEQUALITY, EVEN VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN & GIRLS?

 

WHY HAS VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN & GIRLS BECOME NORMALIZED IN SO MANY PARTS OF THIS WORLD ?

 

WHY DO TRADITIONS & CULTURAL PRACTICES THAT PERPETUATE VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN & GIRLS, CONTINUE WITHOUT REDRESS ?

 

WHY DOES THE MEDIA GRAVITATE TO SENSATIONAL VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN AS FEMICIDE ? 

 

WHY ARE COUNTRY GENDER BUDGETS REPEATEDLY SHORTCHANGED AS FOR DATA, MONITORING, ENFORCING LAWS & PROGRAMS ON GENDER VIOLENCE ?

 

 

SO, WE HAVE THE CEDAW CONVENTION – No specific VAW component, but a General Recommendation and WE HAVE CEDAW COMMITTEE REVIEWS OF COUNTRY REPORTS. 

 

WE HAVE THE BEIJING PLATFORM – AND +5, +10, +15, +20

 

WE HAVE THIS INTERNATIONAL DAY ON VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN – NOVEMBER 25.

 

WE HAVE THE 16 DAYS CAMPAIGN ON VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN.

 

WE HAVE THE UN SPECIAL RAPPORTEUR ON VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN.

 

WE HAVE SO MANY RESOLUTIONS ON VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN AS AT THE UN HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL, THE COMMISSION ON THE STATUS OF WOMEN, & THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY.

 

WE HAVE THE SECRETARY-GENERAL’S ONGOING PROGRAM TO UNITE AGAINST VAW.

 

BUT maybe, just maybe, we need to be more near-sighted, and look at ways to build respect and dignity, for honor, values, ethics, and especially in our core relationships of life. Gender Harmony is a mechanism, a tool that can be adapted to a wide range of situations, and yields outcomes that are celebrated now in more and more countries, and even at the United Nations in Geneva and New York.

 

Today we address non-violence, GENDER HARMONY.

 

WUNRN has found that poetry, art, photography, music, the creative media, can be a powerful force in addressing violence against women and girls. These cultural forms can be effective with sensitive relationship issues, and can be healing, restorative, inspirational. WUNRN releases regularly feature poetry, and each WUNRN Power Point ends with a poem. Women tell WUNRN that this poetry reflects women’s hearts and souls.

SISTERHOOD OF WOMEN

 

Women of the world, girls of the planet,

We are all sisters.

Traumas and joys that happen to one,

Happen to us all.

Issues and rights, oppression and empowerment

Are part of woman's challenge for equality, for dignity,

For we are bonded in the female spirit.

We reach out to learn, to understand each other.

Local to global, rural and urban, near and far, hugs and tears,

Now is our time!

 

WUNRN

 

Lois A. Herman

Coordinator WUNRN

Women’s UN Report Network