16 days of campaign against gender violence start today

By Moses Kidandi

The Government is launching 16 Days of Activism Campaign Against Gender Based Violence (GBV).

The Campaign involves everyone including Governments, UN Agencies, Civil Society, Faith Based and Religious Organizations, the Media and individuals worldwide.

The campaign is commemorated globally during the period of 25th November (which is also the International Day for Elimination of Violence against Women) to 10th December (International Human Rights Day).

The activities will be launched at the National theater tomorrow and will ran under the theme “End Gender Based Violence in the Work Place”.

According to the Uganda Demographic and Health Survey of 2011,the trend of men experiencing violence, increased from 20% in 2006 to 22% in 2011. The same survey done in 2016 explored women’s and men’s attitudes towards wife beating and established that 50% of the women and 41% of men agreed that a husband is justified to beat his wife for specific reasons.

The survey found that up to 56% of Ugandan women have experienced physical violence and more than 1 in 5 women aged 15-49 years (22%) report that they have experienced sexual violence at some point committed by an intimate partner compared to 8% men.

As part of the activities,the Government of Uganda, through the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development will under take different activities to raise awareness about gender-based violence and provide a forum for dialogue and strategy sharing on good practices for preventing and responding to GBV.

State minister for gender and culture Peace Mutuuzo says this year, the 16 days campaign against Gender Based Violence will be focusing violence at the place of work.

Peace Mutuuzo says Gender based violence at the work place is a violation of human rights, a threat to workers’ security and health.

The minister blames the vice on the Low level of awareness and inadequate enforcement of standards and laws such as the Employment Act and Occupational Safety and Health Act.

she also blames it on lack of formal contracts of employment and long working hours, unfair workers remuneration, lack of formal annual or sick leave, lack of conducive environment for Safe Motherhood, poor safety and health culture; inadequate dissemination of relevant policies and lack of clear Grievance Redress Mechanism which are all related to abuse at work places.