International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women


November 27, 2021

The International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women is an anniversary established by the United Nations General Assembly, through resolution number 54/134 of December 17, 1999. The United Nations General Assembly has designated November 25 as the date of the anniversary and invited governments, international organizations and NGOs to organize activities on that day to raise public awareness on the problem of violence against women. The date of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women marks also the beginning of the "16 days of activism against gender-based violence" that precede World Human Rights Day on December 10 each year, promoted in 1991 by the Center for Women's Global Leadership (CWGL) and supported by the United Nations, for to emphasize that violence against women is a violation of human rights. This period includes a number of other significant dates, including November 29, Women Human Rights Defenders Day (WHRD), December 1, World AIDS Day, and December 6, the anniversary of the Montreal Polytechnic Massacre. when 14 engineering students were killed by a 25-year-old who claimed he wanted to "fight feminism". Orange is used as the identification color of the campaign, each year focused on a particular theme. Since 2014 it has taken on "Orange the World" as its slogan. In many countries, such as Italy, the color exhibited on this day is red and one of the symbolic objects is represented by red women's shoes, lined up in squares or in public places , to represent the victims of violence and femicide. The idea was born from an installation by Mexican artist Elina Chauvet, Zapatos Rojos, created in 2009 in a square in Ciudad Juarez, and inspired by the murder of her sister at the hands of her husband and the hundreds of women kidnapped, raped and murdered in this border town in northern Mexico, the hub of the drug and human market. The installation was subsequently replicated in many countries around the world, including Argentina, the United States, Norway, Ecuador, Canada, Spain and Italy. The campaign in Italy is being carried out in particular by the anti-violence center and by women's associations involved in violence against women.

The UN resolution of 1999

In resolution 54/134 of 17 December 1999 it is specified that violence against women is understood to mean "any act of gender-based violence which results in or is likely to cause physical, sexual or psychological harm or suffering to women, including the threats of such acts, the arbitrary coercion or deprivation of liberty, whether they occur in public or private life ". Violence against women is seen as a manifestation of the "historically unequal power relations" between the sexes, one of the "crucial social mechanisms" of domination and discrimination by which women are forced into a subordinate position to men to prevent their advancement. . Recalling what was deliberated in the Third and Fourth World Conferences on Women held in Nairobi in 1985 and in Beijing in 1995 with the participation of representatives of 140 nations, the resolution inserts this theme into the broader question of human rights, underlining how violence against women is an obstacle to achieving equality, development and peace, and how it is necessary to adopt measures aimed at preventing and eliminating all forms of discrimination, especially for the most vulnerable women (belonging to minority groups, indigenous, refugee women, migrant women, women living in rural or remote communities, destitute, elderly, disabled women, and women in situations of armed conflict).


25 November 19

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