UN Rights Chief Urges End to 'Economic Violence' Against Women

Posted on 09 July 2024

In a landmark address to the United Nations Human Rights Council, High Commissioner Volker Türk has called for an end to the pervasive ‘economic violence’ against women and girls. Speaking at the Council’s first panel for the annual full-day discussion on women’s rights, Mr. Türk highlighted the extraordinary progress made by the global women’s movement. However, he stressed that the need for a separate panel on gender-based violence underscores the fragile nature of these hard-won advances. Economic violence, which includes the denial of access to financial resources as a form of abuse or control, often remains unseen and unregulated. Yet, it can be as detrimental as physical violence, involving control, exploitation, and sabotage. The High Commissioner pointed out that one in three women have experienced violence—be it physical, sexual, psychological, or economic—at least once in their lives, underscoring the gravity of the issue.

Mr. Türk emphasised the urgent need for a comprehensive overhaul of discriminatory laws and practices that contribute to economic violence. He called for gender equality to be actively promoted through legislation governing all aspects of life, coupled with policy measures to ensure the enforcement of these laws. The High Commissioner also advocated for stronger support systems for survivors of economic violence, including improved complaint mechanisms, economic and social support, psychological assistance, and justice for perpetrators. With 3.9 billion women worldwide facing legal barriers that affect their economic participation, and women earning only 77 pence for every pound paid to men, Mr. Türk declared that current global efforts towards gender equality have fallen short. His clarion call for change resonates as a reminder that violence against women and girls is not only abhorrent but also inexcusable.
Source: UN News

Photo: by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay


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