UN Women: Gender-based violence has no place in society

Date: Wednesday, July 22, 2020

[Media Statement]

Stop Rape Gender-based violence has no place in society. Photo: UN Women/Shazia Usman

Suva, Fiji – Whether it is in our homes; communities; sports; places of work, learning, or worship - gender-based violence is always unacceptable - anywhere it occurs and in any form it takes.

Violence against women and girls is a grave violation of human rights. Its impact ranges from immediate to long-term multiple physical, sexual and mental consequences for women and girls, including death. It negatively affects women’s general well-being and prevents women from fully participating in society. Violence not only has negative consequences for women but also their families, the community and the country at large. It has tremendous costs, from greater health care and legal expenses and losses in productivity, impacting national budgets and overall development. While most Pacific countries have laws that criminalise gender-based violence, inadequate and uneven application of those laws detract from ensuring safety for women and girls.

Through the Pacific Partnership to End Violence Against Women and Girls (Pacific Partnership) programme, UN Women Fiji Multi-Country Office (MCO) works with over 65 partners in the Pacific to address violence against women and girls in multiple ways through education, awareness, through partnerships with faith-based organisations, and through sports. For example, since 2017, UN Women Fiji MCO has partnered with Oceania Rugby to promote gender equality and breakdown stereotypes, demonstrating that violence has no place on or off the field.

“Whether it’s faith, the workplace, education or sports, UN Women is committed to working hand-in-hand with partners to mobilise communities to reject violence and support the rights and equality of women and girls. These are challenging spaces to work in but if change is to happen, all partners must keep persevering – strategically, boldly and together. Only then can we ensure that violence and harassment has no place in our communities, our homes, our schools, workplaces and sports clubs," said UN Women Fiji MCO’s Ending Violence Against Women Advisor Abigail Erikson.

The Pacific Partnership is funded primarily by the European Union with targeted support from the governments of Australia and New Zealand and cost-sharing with UN Women. It brings together governments, civil society organisations, communities and other partners to promote gender equality, prevent violence against women and girls, and increase access to quality response services for survivors. The Pacific Partnership is jointly implemented by the Pacific Community (SPC) Regional Rights Resource Team (RRRT), Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (Forum Secretariat) and UN Women Fiji Multi-Country Office.

 

For further information please visit:

Media enquiries should be directed to:

  • Shazia Usman Communications and Media Specialist UN Women
    Mobile: +679 9228389 Email: shazia.usman@unwomen.org

BACKGROUND INFORMATION

UN Women Fiji Multi-Country Office (MCO)

UN Women is the global champion for gender equality, working to develop and uphold standards and create an environment in which every woman and girl can exercise her human rights and live up to her full potential. The UN Women Multi-Country Office (MCO) based in Fiji, covers 14 Pacific Island Countries and Territories (PICTs): Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Kiribati, Nauru, Niue, Palau, Republic of the Marshall Islands, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tokelau, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu. The Fiji MCO works to progress gender equality and women’s empowerment in the Pacific through four key programmes: Women’s Economic Empowerment; Ending Violence Against Women and Girls; Women’s Political Empowerment and Leadership; and Gender and Protection in Humanitarian Action.