International Women’s Day, and momentum for stepping up protection

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(Photo: KEMENPPPA.GO.ID)

IO – Minister of Women’s Empowerment and Children’s Protection I Gusti Ayu Bintang Darmawati hopes that the celebration of the International Women’s Day can provide momentum to improve protection of women from violence. The way to do that is by empowering women and promoting gender equality. “The celebration of the International Women’s Day is the right moment to trigger the need to improve knowledge and build up synergy to protect women from violence,” she said on Tuesday (09/03/2021). “Changes should be made by empowering women so that they dare to talk and fight for themselves. Without empowerment, women will remain imprisoned in repeated circles of violence.”

a strong synergy between the sexes, a world where men and women are equal, so that we can achieve our common purpose. A world where women are free from all types of violence, exploitation, discrimination, and stigma; a world where women can become strong, independent, and powerful so that they can fight alongside men and achieve Golden Indonesia for a better world,” Minister Ayu Bintang said.

Through the ages and even now, violence hits women much more than it affects men. The National Women Life Experience Survey held in 2016 shows that 1 out of every 3 women aged 15-64 years old suffer from physical, sexual, verbal, and other types of violence in the hand of their spouses, family members, neighbors, and strangers all their lives. Meanwhile, the National Commission of Women’s Annual Records show that violence against women in Indonesia increased up to 792% or eightfold within the past 12 years. UN Women further records that online violence against women increased greatly along with the rise in the use of information technology during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Government has performed various efforts to reduce the level of violence against women, among others by validating the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women, as well as validating Laws concerning Human Rights, Laws concerning the Elimination of Household Violence, Law concerning the Eradication of Human Trafficking, and the creation of the Draft Law for Eliminating Sexual Violence as a comprehensive legal basis. “As for the Draft Law for Eliminating Sexual Violence, we ask for the support of the Deputy Minister of Law and Human Rights that has been monitoring its creation. Most Indonesian women have been waiting for this Law to be enacted, especially violence survivors,” Minister Ayu Bintang said.

The Minister went on to say that the various efforts will not achieve maximum results without the support of all sectors of development, whether the Government, the world of business, mass media, and the common people. “We all have our respective roles to play. We need to hold hands and join forces, to establish a system that is female-friendly that includes efforts starting from prevention to rehabilitation,” she said. (eka)