November 26, 2014 NEW YORK CITY By Janet Ekstract
UNITED NATIONS (TURKISH JOURNAL) – The global call for action on gender inequality and violence against women has been pushed forward in 2014 with two major United Nations initiatives whose goals are to mobilize men and boys to join a worldwide campaign that promotes gender equality for women in every nation. While U.N. statistics reveal that 133 million women and girls worldwide have already been exposed to genital mutilation and circumcision while one in three females have been victims of some type of domestic or physical violence – the U.N. is stepping up its efforts to eradicate this global scourge.
Each year on November 25, the U.N. observes International Day for the Elimination
of Violence Against Women and this year – 16 days of activism are being promoted
as the ‘Orange Campaign’ – with the concept of using the color orange in each global
community to mobilize neighborhoods and raise awareness with a variety of events and activities through December 10 – Human Rights Day – to promote a brighter future – sponsored by the UN organization UNiTE to End Violence Against Women campaign.
Since 1995 in Beijing where The Fourth World Conference on Women met – U.N.
member states adopted the groundbreaking Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action to end all forms of violence against women and girls and to highlight violence against women as one of 12 crucial areas of concern with gender equality among women and girls.
The result has been that since that time, two-thirds of nations have created official laws to stop domestic violence though issues with those laws such as implementation and cultural issues as well as antiquated legal systems still remain as significant roadblocks to progress. That’s why the “He for She” campaign, the first of its kind at the U.N., is being spearheaded by newly appointed Goodwill Women’s Ambassador, actress Emma Watson – known for her leading role in the Harry Potter movies.
Watson, who spoke at the U.N. on September 20, to kick off the campaign, made it clear that this issue is everyone’s issue and that as she explained in her speech: “But sadly, I can say that there is no one country in the world where all women can expect to receive these rights. No country in the world can yet say they have achieved gender equality.”
She added that the biggest obstacle to affecting a major change on gender inequality and violence against women is actively seeking participation from men and boys. As Watson said in her groundbreaking U.N. talk: “How can we affect change in the world when only half of it is invited or feel welcome to participate in the conversation?”