International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women
Violence against women and girls is one of the most widespread human rights abuses in all countries. On Sunday November 25, 2012, the Parliament of Trinidad and Tobago joins with legislatures throughout the world in observing the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women. This year, Parliaments were encouraged to highlight their initiatives centered on legislation to end violence against women and girls since Parliamentarians can use their position to bring on board the police, prosecutors, judges, health care providers, social workers and religious leaders on this issue.
The Parliament of Trinidad and Tobago has over the years approved several pieces of legislation to help combat the act and effects of domestic violence, including the Children Act (protection of children), the Domestic Violence Act (protection of spouses and children in domestic situations), the Mediation Act (alternative resolution to acrimonious court matters) and the Sexual Offences Act.
In a democracy, a successful law has to be correctly enforced. Successful implementation also lies in society’s awareness of violence against women. The ability of parliamentarians to shape public opinion , sensitize and engage the wider public in an open debate on changing social norms and discriminating attitudes is essential.
To help highlight this most important day, the Parliament of Trinidad and Tobago has produced a series of short video clips which will feature explanations from persons concerned with the prevention of violence against women on the effectiveness of some of the Acts relating to this subject that have been passed and will show how legislation has assisted in strengthening the avenues available to women/girls who are victims of abuse. Interviews have been done with social activists, lawyers and lecturers who are knowledgeable on the issue of violence against women/girls and who work extensively with victims of abuse. These video features are currently being aired on the Parliament Channel, Parliament Radio 105.5 FM and on the Parliament’s social media channels.
The International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women on November 25 also marks the start of 16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence which will lead up to Human Rights Day on Monday December 10.
Ms. Suzanne Salandy
Director, Corporate Communications