We are taking part in the UN International Campaign of 16 Days of Activism to end Gender Based Violence; 25th November to 10th December 2023. This year’s theme is the impact of technology
Internationally, Orange is the colour theme for this campaign. As Soroptimists, we are aiming, over the 16 Days, to highlight the impact of Violence against Women and Girls – both locally and nationally in the UK by holding a number of ‘Orange’ events here in Kenilworth.
Violence against women and girls…
means any act of gender based violence that results in, or is likely to result in, physical, sexual or psychological harm or suffering. This includes threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or private life.
The Crime Survey for England and Wales estimates that there are 2.3 million victims of domestic abuse each year. Two thirds are women. Between 2 and 3 women a week are killed by a current or former partner in the UK.
The police recorded 1.5 million abuse-related incidents and crimes in England and Wales in the year ending March 2022. The number of domestic abuse-related crimes increased by 7.7% compared to the previous year.
The UN states that globally, 81,000 women and girls were killed in 2020 (58% at the hands of an intimate partner or family member, which equates to a woman or girl killed every 11 minutes in their home.
Sexual Assaults and Harassment
Crime Survey for England and Wales estimate that 798,000 women experienced sexual assault in the year ending 2022. This equates to na prevalence rate of 3.3% of women.
90% of girls in senior schools in England and Wales reported to OFSTED that they had experienced sexual harassment or unwanted sexual touching by peers in school.
On-line Abuse and Harassment
1 in 3 women in the UK report that they have experienced on-line abuse or harassment on social media or elsewhere on-line. The On-Line Safety Bill is going through the House of Lords at present.
Harassment in Public Places
80% of women in the UK report experiencing harassment in public spaces (Suzy Lamplugh Trust). Tackling the prevalence of unwanted and aggressive behaviours such as harassment that underlie the broader cycle of violence against women and girls is a key priority.
Nearly 1 in 5 women have experienced completed or attempted rape during her lifetime.
Female Genital Mutilation
FGM is still taking place in this country and throughout the world. FGM violates all child rights and is rooted in gender inequality.
Human Trafficking & Modern Slavery
Human trafficking and Modern Slavery is a transitional activity that involves the exploitation of human rights through sale, more than half are women and girls. Trafficking and slavery of women and girls is prevalent in almost all countries including the UK and accounts for the fastest growing business in the world.
Violence against Women with Disabilities
Disabled women and girls are more likely to be subjected to violence than non-disabled women and girls. Accessing justice and support and protection services is often impossible for women with disabilities because of accessibility, legal and other barriers.
This is often the result of deeply entrenched gender inequalities. Child marriage threatens the lives, the well-being and the future of girls. Soroptimists fight against this violation of child rights and for the education of girls so that they develop their full potential.
Sexual Harassment at Work
At work places, sexual harassment and often sexual coercion has intensified as women make progress to the top. Women are targeted for their gender and for progressive roles they have adopted.
Help and Support
If you or someone you know needs help and support with any of the issues we are raising then there is help available. Do please get in touch with one of these organisations.
National Domestic Abuse Helpline 24/7 – 0808 2000 247 nationaldahelpline.org.uk
National Rape Crisis Helpline 24/7 – 0808 500 222 rapecrisis.org.uk
NSPCC – 0808 800 5000 email@example.com
Human Trafficking – Salvation Army Helpline 24/7 – 0800 818 3733
Modern Day Slavery Foundation Helpline – 0800 0121 700
Female Genital Mutilation – NSPCC FGM Helpline 24/7 – 0800 028 3550
Forward (FGM Advice & Support) – 0208 960 4000
National Stalking Helpline – 0808 802 0300