Global Resources

Defending Women, Defending Rights. Proceedings of the International Consultation on Women's Human Rights Defenders

Author: V. Collis
Publication Date: Feb 2006
Every day women human rights defenders around the world are subjected to abuses as they seek to protect their own rights, and those of the communities in which they live and work. This report is based on the International Consultation on Women Human Rights Defenders (WHRDs), held in 2005. It discusses the main sources of the abuse experienced by WHRDs: state actors; non-state actors (with an emphasis on fundamentalist groups); families and communities; sexuality-based attacks. Strategies for tackling this abuse include drawing on international legal instruments, particularly those developed through the UN, as well as a range of solidarity building initiatives designed to link WHRDs more effectively on a global basis. A series of concrete action points are outlined, including:

?Raising awareness of violence and femicide related issues through the media;
?Organising training at the grassroots level to ensure people are aware of the forms of redress that exist for their protection;
?Developing a website where WHRDs can share information, list perpetrators, document cases and build coalitions;
?Setting up formal regional networks in a range of continents, including Africa, CIS, Middle East and Latin America to provide solidarity, raise awareness, and strengthen national and local efforts.