International Day To End Violence Against Women

Today is the UN’s International Day to End Violence Against Women.

Women activists have been marking the 25th November as a day against violence since 1981, and in 1999 a UN resolution was passed to officially recognise the date.

Violence against women is a huge issue worldwide, with the UN suggesting that as many as 70% of women worldwide face violence, most often by a partner.

According to World Bank Data, women worldwide aged 15-44 are more at risk from rape and domestic violence than cancer, car accidents, war and malaria.

In the UK it is estimated that around 3 million women  experience rape, domestic violence, forced marriage, stalking, sexual exploitation, trafficking and other forms of violence every year, this is the equivalent to the population of Wales.

In Cardiff, Welsh Women’s Aid and Black Association of Women Step Out [BAWSO] co-organised  a march and service at Llandaff Cathedral to mark the occasion.

I spoke with some of the women who turned out this morning to find out why they decided to march.

I also spoke with Dr Mwenya Chimba, Development, Research and Information Manager of BAWSO about the work the organisation does in Cardiff.

BAWSO offers a safe place for ethnic minority women and children who are the victims of domestic abuse.

To mark the day, the coalition government has launched a plan to tackle violence against women in the UK.  Home Secretary Theresa May said:

“No level of violence against women and girls is acceptable in modern Britain or anywhere else in the world.

“As women and as a society we have made great strides but we need to do more to ensure that women and future generations are not held back.

“My ambition is nothing less than ending violence against women and girls and our strategy document will outline our commitments to seeing this become a reality.”

Whether the strategy document will have any effect on levels of violence against women will remain to be seen.

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About Rachel Conner

Rachel Conner is currently a postgraduate newspaper journalism student at Cardiff University. She graduated in 2010 from the University of Durham with an LLB. View all posts by Rachel Conner

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