The European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE) has joined the White Ribbon Campaign, the world’s largest initiative that reaches out to engage men and boys in standing up against violence against women.
Notable men across Europe are demonstrating their support and commitment to speaking out against violence towards women through their engagement in the White Ribbon Campaign. EIGE will join the campaign this year on 29 November (17:00 EET) through its social media.
Men’s violence against women is a widespread and structural problem throughout Europe and the world. It includes victims and perpetrators of all ages, educational backgrounds, economical and social positions, and reflects the unequal distribution of power between women and men in our society. Ending violence cannot and should not be the responsibility of women alone, it is essential to engage all men in publicly condemning violence against women. By speaking out and condemning violence against women these men will help to move towards a society where health, dignity, security and autonomy is ensured for women, children and other men.
Notable men who have already joined the campaign include the European Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion, the Ministers for Foreign Affairs of Estonia, Finland, Lithuania, the Netherlands and Sweden, Minister for Justice and Equality of Ireland and Minister of Gender Equality and Ecclesiastical Affairs of Denmark as well as directors of European Police College, European GNSS Agency and EUROFOUND.
The minister for foreign affairs of Estonia, Mr Urmas Paet stated: “In order to combat violence against women it is crucial that men not only acknowledge the issue but are also willing to act on stopping it.”
Gender-based Violence (GBV) is high on EIGE’s agenda. EIGE offers access to research, methods, tools and good practices on combating GBV. Several EIGE’s studies on different aspects of gender-based violence, including sexual violence, domestic violence, female genital mutilation and support services for victims of violence, bring the first overview of the situation across all the EU Member States in these areas. “We must bring to light this hidden crime and the many different forms that gender violence takes throughout the European Union, from physical and psychological abuse in partnerships, to sexual assault and rape, forced prostitution, trafficking in human beings and female genital mutilation,” says Thérèse Murphy, Head of Operations at the European Institute for Gender Equality in Vilnius.
EIGE’s research shows huge gaps both in data collection and in combating gender-based violence across the EU. For example, over 25,000 shelter places for women victims of gender-based violence are missing in the EU and only 6 Member States have helplines for women victims of violence which are available 24 hours and fully free of charge. Another example is female genital mutilation; despite 10 Member States having a criminal law provision specific for FGM, prosecutions are very rare.
The White Ribbon Campaign is an ongoing initiative inviting men across Europe to join by signing a “pledge”. The pledge will be made publicly available on 29 November on EIGE’s website http://eige.europa.eu/content/white-ribbon .
Men signing the pledge make a commitment never to remain silent on violence against women.
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More information on EIGE’s work in the area of gender-based violence:
Follow EIGE on Twitter: @eurogender
The European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE) is the EU knowledge centre on gender equality. EIGE supports policy makers and all relevant institutions in their efforts to make equality between women and men a reality for all Europeans, by providing them with specific expertise and reliable information on gender equality in Europe.
EIGE European Institute for Gender Equality
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