Strategic objective D.1.
Take integrated measures to prevent and eliminate violence against women
Actions to be taken
124. By Governments:
i. Enact and enforce legislation against the perpetrators of practices and acts of violence against women, such as female genital mutilation, female infanticide, prenatal sex selection and dowry-related violence, and give vigorous support to the efforts of non-governmental and community organizations to eliminate such practices;
j. Formulate and implement, at all appropriate levels, plans of action to eliminate violence against women;
k. Adopt all appropriate measures, especially in the field of education, to modify the social and cultural patterns of conduct of men and women, and to eliminate prejudices, customary practices and all other practices based on the idea of the inferiority or superiority of either of the sexes and on stereotyped roles for men and women;
Beijing Declaration (1995)
The Beijing Declaration deals quite frankly and directly, though in academic and rights garb, with the serious global social and legal issue of violence against women in addition to the fallouts around it.
For examples listed above, we can take into account the basic facts of tens of millions of women undergoing female genital mutilation. The nature of cultural institutions dictating the preference for sons over daughters and, thus, the need to kill a female child over a male child because of the chance to carry on the family name more, within the context of the culture, through the sons rather than the daughters.
This extends right into the “prenatal sex selection,” which simply builds into this general line of argument against or analysis of the sex preference for boys and, thus, bias against girls. The formulation of laws and enforcement of them against these violations against the autonomy and the bodily integrity of women must be put in place, firmly.
With setting in place the plans and then enacting them “at all levels,” including legal, administrative, political, educational, and so on, the work to reduce violence against women in its systemic form can begin to take some shape.
Akin to the need to teach the sciences, to fund scientific enterprises at a national level, to alleviate and mitigate the anthropogenic climate crisis, to instill universal human values within normal human empathic and bonding sentiments, it needs to be done all at once; these approaches require pervasive administrative efforts and intensive funding linked to long-term implementation to become effective.
All these “appropriate measures” connected to the relations between the sexes can only become implemented with sufficient political will, sociocultural approval, and financial backing for the known-to-work and more experimental programs and initiatives currently on offer to solve this global problem.
It is and never has been about superiority or inferiority of men or women but about the equal treatment of them in order to reduce the stereotypes each experience throughout their lives and, in this particular section, the reduction and eventual elimination of violence against women.
- The Universal Declaration of Human Rights in the Preamble, Article 16, and Article 25(2).
- Convention Against Discrimination in Education (1960) in Article 1.
- The International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (1966) in Article 3, Article 7, and Article 13.
- International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (1966).
- Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (1979).
- Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (1984).
- The Declaration on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women and the optional protocol (1993).
- Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action (1995), Five-year review of progress (2000), 10-year review in 2005, the 15-year review in 2010, and the 20-year review in 2015.
- United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 (2000), and the UN Security Council additional resolutions on women, peace and security: 1820 (2008), 1888 (2009), 1889 (2009), 1960 (2010), 2106 (2013), 2122 (2013), and 2242 (2015).
- Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children (2000).
- The Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the Rights of Women in Africa or the “Maputo Protocol” (2003).
- Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence or the Istanbul Convention (2011) Article 38 and Article 39.
- UN Women’s strategic plan, 2018–2021
- 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
- 2015 agenda with 17 new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) (169 targets for the end to poverty, combatting inequalities, and so on, by 2030). The SDGs were preceded by the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) from 2000 to 2015.
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