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Women MLAs support UN initiative on violence against women

24 November 2015 

Rosamond Bennett, chief executive of Christian Aid Ireland has thanked the women members of the Northern Ireland Assembly for their overwhelming support in coming together for a photograph to mark the UN International Day for the Elimination of violence against women.

Tax of Life Report

Wednesday 25th of November marks the worldwide launch of the campaign on 16 days of Activism against Gender Based Violence Against Women.

Rosamond said, 'From 25 November, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, to 10 December, Human Rights Day, and the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence Campaign is a time to galvanize action to end violence against women and girls around the world. The international campaign originated from the first Women's Global Leadership Institute coordinated by the Centre for Women's Global Leadership back in 1991. In that time, though much great work has been done, the issue of violence against women remains as relevant as ever, both at home and around the world.'

The year 2015 marks the 20-year anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, the most progressive road map to gender equality. World leaders met in March at the United Nations 59th Commission on the Status of Women and in September at the 70th General Assembly to take stock of the progress made and commit to take action to close the gaps that are holding women and girls back.

This year a new Sustainable Development agenda, which for the first time includes specific targets and indicators on ending violence against women, also replaced the Millennium Development Goals.
Rosamond said that this year the campaign would focus specifically on the right to education.

'For me it is not just about educating women and girls on their human rights but also engaging men and boys, educating them on the rights of women. Violence against women is not inevitable; it is totally unacceptable, both domestically and internationally.

'It is estimated that one in 3 women worldwide will be raped, beaten, coerced into sex or abused in her lifetime usually by a family member or intimate partner. Sexual violence is just one form of violence against women and it is perpetrated in times of war as well as in times of peace. It happens in public spaces and in happens in the privacy of homes. Violence against women is often cloaked in secrecy, accepted as a part of life. It is a crime where the victim is blamed and the perpetrator often remains invisible, unchallenged and unprosecuted. It is an expression of power inequalities between men and women.'


1. Christian Aid works in some of the world's poorest communities in around 40 countries at any one time. We act where there is great need, regardless of religion, helping people to live a full life, free from poverty. We provide urgent, practical and effective assistance in tackling the root causes of poverty as well as its effects.

2. Christian Aid’s core belief is that the world can and must be changed so that poverty is ended: this is what we stand for. Everything we do is about ending poverty and injustice: swiftly, effectively, and sustainably. Our strategy document ‘From Inspiration to Impact’ outlines how we set about this task.

3. Christian Aid is a member of the ACT Alliance, a global coalition of more than 130 churches and church-related organisations that work together in humanitarian assistance, advocacy and development. Further details at http://actalliance.org 4. Follow Christian Aid Ireland on Twitter: twitter.com/christianaidirl

4. For more information about the work of Christian Aid, visit www.christianaid.ie

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