16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence

16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence

From Peace in the Home to Peace in the World: Let's Challenge Militarism and End Violence Against Women

(25 November -- 10 December 2014)

The 16 Days campaign is an opportunity to show international solidarity in the fight to end violence against women. This year's theme--From Peace in the Home to Peace in the World--highlights the link between militarism and gender violence, as well as the role of women as peacemakers in their own homes and nations. Amnesty International joins with the 16 Days Campaign and with organizations and people all over the world to promote women's rights to peace and freedom from violence. Join with us these 16 days to stand against gender violence and help us end violence against women!

You can make a difference!
Learn more about each of the cases below to find out more about women's human rights and gender violence and how you can take action to fight for women's human rights around the globe.

Click on each of the following linked issue briefs below to stand with women and girls around the globe as they demand their rights!

  • IVAWA:  Around the world at least one in three women is still beaten, coerced into sex or otherwise abused in her lifetime.  Take action on the International Violence Against Women Act to make ending violence against women and girls a diplomatic and foreign assistance priority for the United States
  • Egypt: Today, women in Egypt face an epidemic of violence and discrimination. Over 99% of women said they had faced sexual harassment and 47% some form of domestic violence.  Take action now to demand Egyptian authorities condemn sexual violence and discrimination and commit to implement a comprehensive strategy to combat sexual violence and discrimination
  • El Salvador: If you are a woman or girl in El Salvador, it doesn’t matter if you’re pregnant as a result of rape, whether you’re a child, or whether the pregnancy is a risk to your life: the government demands you give birth.  El Salvador’s abortion ban is a systemic denial of the human rights of girls and women, and it is killing them. Act today!
  • South Africa: Pregnant women and new mothers in South Africa are dying needlessly because they are not getting vital health care.  Maternal mortality rates are far too high, and South African authorities must make better healthcare for women and girls in the Mkhondo Municipality a priority.
  • Maghreb Region: In Algeria and Tunisia the law allows rapists to walk free if they marry their victim – if she's aged under 18.  Other discriminatory provisions in Moroccan, Algerian and Tunisian legislation fail to protect women and girl survivors of sexual violence, routinely denying them justice.  Authorities must immediately meet their human rights obligations by adopting comprehensive laws and policies that protect women and girls against sexual violence
  • Afghanistan: Women’s human rights are quickly eroding as international troops prepare to leave Afghanistan. Violence against women is on the rise, and with lack of access to justice and political representation, hard-won rights are at risk. Stand with us and ask the US and Afghanistan to commit to prioritizing and protecting women’s human rights for a sustainable, equitable peace!

Also, check back as the campaign continues to find out more about:

  • The connection between guns and violence against women
  • How you can stand with women and girls raped in conflict

With all this information, you are equipped to be a women’s rights defender!  Here are 40 Ideas to help you take action!

What is Gender-based violence?
Gender-based violence is violence that is directed against a woman because she is a woman, or is violence that affects women disproportionately. Both gender-based violence and violence against women are terms used to describe human rights violations committed against women that stem from gender inequality and the failure of governments and societies to recognize the human rights of women. Acts of gender-based violence can include domestic violence, sexual abuse, rape, sexual harassment, trafficking of women, forced prostitution, harmful social practices, and more.  Gender-based violence also includes denial of medical services and adequate care.

What is Militarism?
Militarism is a process whereby military values, institutions and patterns of behavior have a dominant influence over society. It is an ideology that creates a culture of fear and supports the use of violence, aggression, or military interventions for settling disputes and enforcing economic and political interests—a culture that appropriate and restricts women’s bodies and women’s control over their own bodies. To read more about militarism in the context of gender-based violence, click here.

Gender-based violence inhibits or nullifies the enjoyment of a person's full human rights and fundamental freedoms, including the:

  • Right to life;
  • Right not to be subject to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment;
  • Right to equal protection according to humanitarian norms in time of international or internal armed conflict;
  • Right to liberty and security of person;
  • Right to equal protection under the law;
  • Right to equality in the family;
  • Right to the highest standard attainable of physical and mental health

Those whose rights are violated are entitled to:

  • Access to justice
  • Right to reparations
  • Right to remedy

We'd like to hear from you about your planned events, activities and materials. Please send your 16 Days plans to us at WHR@aiusa.org so we can chart and recognize the amazing activism we all are doing on behalf of women's human rights.

Don't forget to follow the Women's Human Rights Coordination Group on Facebook and Twitter to stay up-to-date on women's human rights!

Join our Women's Human Rights Action Network to keep defending women's human rights!