“Many women say that verbal violence causes more harm than physical violence because it damages self-esteem so deeply. Women have not wanted to hear battered women say that the verbal abuse was as hurtful as the physical abuse: to acknowledge that truth would be tantamount to acknowledging that virtually every woman is a battered woman. It is difficult to keep strong against accusations of being a bitch, stupid, inferior, etc., etc.”
― Suzanne Pharr, Homophobia: A Weapon of Sexism
Honor Killings: The United Nations Populations Fund estimates that as many as 5,000 women and girls are murdered by family members each year in so-called “honor killings” around the world. According to the United Nations Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary and arbitrary executions, “honor killings” have been reported in Bangladesh, Brazil, Ecuador, Egypt, India, Israel, Italy, Jordan, Morocco, Pakistan, Sweden, Turkey, Uganda and the United Kingdom.
Female Genital Mutilation: The World Health Organization estimates that more than 100 million girls and women around the world have undergone female genital mutilation (FGM), a traditional practice that involves either the partial or total removal of the clitoris (clitoridectomy), the removal of the entire clitoris and the cutting of the labia minora (excision), or the removal of all external genitalia and the stitching together of the two sides of the vulva, leaving only a very small vaginal opening (infibulation). FGM is commonly practiced in various countries in the Middle East and Africa, though it has also been documented in Asia, the United States and Europe. At least 2 million girls every year, 6,000 per day, are at risk of undergoing FGM.
Acid Burning: In some countries, women and girls are attacked with acid as a result of family disputes or rejected sex or marriage proposals. An increasing number of such acid burnings have been reported in Bangladesh, Nigeria and Cambodia. Those who survive are permanently disfigured and/or blinded. Perpetrators of such attacks frequently escape punishment.
Dowry Death: The United Nations Children’s Fund estimates that as many as 17 women were murdered per day when their families failed to make dowry payments to the families of their husbands in India in 1997. In a report presented to the Beijing + 5 Special Session of the United Nations General Assembly, the Government of India indicated a 15.2 percent rise in dowry deaths in 1999.
These are only a few examples of violence that are committed against women and girls every day in countries around the world. Although the manifestation of violence may vary according to the economic, social and cultural context in which it occurs, it is a universal phenomenon that is prevalent in every segment of every society, regardless of ethnicity, race, culture, age, class or country. In fact, the World Health Organization estimates that violence is a greater cause of death among women aged 15 to 44 than cancer, malaria and traffic accidents combined.
This bimonthly column written by Equality Now is devoted to issues of violence against women and girls around the world. Each column will feature a particular form of violence and will include recommendations for taking action. By presenting a global overview of gender-based violence, we hope to raise awareness of not only the pervasiveness of violence in all communities and societies, but also of the urgency of the problem. Through awareness and activism, we can eliminate violence against women and girls around the world.
Equality Now is an international human rights organization dedicated to the protection and promotion of the human rights of women and girls around the world. Issues of concern to Equality Now include trafficking in women, rape, domestic violence, denial of reproductive rights and other forms of discrimination and violence against women. Equality Now campaigns against these violations through its Women’s Action Network, which consists of 20,000 groups and individuals in more than 100 countries around the world. Taking advantage of various action techniques such as letter-writing and fax campaigns, video witnessing, media events and other public information activities, Equality Now mobilizes action on behalf of individual women whose rights are bring violated and promotes women’s rights at local, national and international levels.
There is another heinous crime:
Rape pornography is extremely inhumane and pure misogyny. Here were often teens and even children brutally tortured and raped. This must strictly be punished with long prison sentences and these pages must be permanently removed from the internet. The existence of such rape porn I found out as a perverted stalker (a australian ex-tenant with bosnian roots) sent me this for five years such kind of rape porn mails and the sender could not be found unambiguously. Rape porn is a kind of femicide and we must stop it.
The kind people treat you shows you what kind of people they are!"
- Anita Kanitz
Marital rape, the daily and most common crime worldwide:
Marital rape is rape. Definition of marital rape, spousal rape. Types of marital rape. Effects of spousal rape on victim.
Marital rape, also known as spousal rape or partner rape, is a type of rape that happens between two people who are married or in another type of intimate relationship. This type of rape is defined by the Rape, Incest and Abuse National Network as:
". . . sexual acts committed without a person's consent and/or against a person's will when the perpetrator is the individual's current partner (married or not), previous partner, or co-habitator."
Some marital rape victims don't realize they have been raped as they are under the mistaken impression that partners cannot rape each other. This is false, however, and sexual acts without consent – even among intimate partners – still constitute rape.
• Intimate partners account for 28% of rapists
Types of Marital Rape
According to the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network, there are three types of marital rape:
Battering rape – battering rape occurs when physical and sexual violence occur together. Victims may experience the physical and sexual violence at the same time or one may occur after another. The rape may occur after the physical violence as an attempt to "make up."
Force-only rape – this type of rape happens when physical violence is not present. As with all rape, this type of spousal rape is spurred by a desire to exert power and control over another person. This desire manifests in acting as if sex is an entitlement to one party from another.
Obsessive/Sadistic rape – obsessive or sadistic rape is rape that involves torture or perverse sexual acts. This type of marital rape tends to be very violent and result in physical injuries.
Emotional and Physical Reactions to Spousal Rape
Research shows that spousal rape victims are more likely to be raped multiple times. This, unfortunately, means that victims of marital rape may suffer the most long-term effects psychologically and sometimes physically. Spousal rape can also be difficult to prosecute and this puts additional stress on victims.
The physical effects of spousal rape are the same effects suffered by any rape victim including:
Injuries to the vaginal and anal areas
Bruises and soreness
Injuries caused by weapons
Miscarriages or stillbirths
Contraction of sexually-transmitted infections, including HIV
Emotional reactions to marital rape can be very dramatic and severe as the sense of betrayal is profound after being raped by an intimate partner. Emotional reactions to spousal rape include:
Shock, anxiety and intense fear
Acute and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
Fundamental loss of trust
Bill of Rights
I have the right:
• to an equal and healthy relationship
with my partner
• to be respected
• to change my mind
• to kindness from my partner
• to emotional support
• to be listened to politely by my partner
• to have my own opinions, even if my
• to have my own feelings
• to clear and honest answers to
at concern me
• to live free from accusation and blame
• to live free from criticism and
• to have my work and interests spoken
of with respect
• to encouragement
• to live free from emotional and
• to live free from angry outburst and
• to be called by no name that hurts,
shames or puts me down
• to be respectfully asked rather than
• to be myself as long as I am respectful
• to not have physical or sexual contact
with my partner when I choose.
Even though they make up half the population, women and girls have endured discrimination in most societies for thousands of years. In the past, women were treated as property of their husbands or fathers - they couldn't own land, they couldn't vEvote or go to school, and were subject to beatings and abuse and could do nothing about it. Over the last hundred years, much progress has been made to gain equal rights for women around the world, but many still live without the rights to which all people are entitled.
-- Robert Alan Silverstein
Nearly all women have experiences with violence at work:
Violence against women at work
Women from all backgrounds are attacked each year at work. Among women, murder is the leading cause of death from a workplace injury. Sometimes women are attacked during a robbery. Usually, though, women are hurt by someone they know, like a co-worker, customer, client, or patient. And sometimes attacks are the result of domestic violence that spills over into the workplace.
Here are steps you can take if you are concerned about violence at work:
Learn how to stay safe. Ask your supervisor about any safety policies and trainings. Make sure you know how to get help in a violent situation. Find out what security services are available, such as a security escort to your car.
Talk to your supervisor about adding safety tools. These can include panic alarms, closed circuit TV cameras, better lighting, and signs saying that only small amounts of cash are available.
Report any incidents that worry or upset you. Tell your supervisor about physical or verbal abuse. Also report worrisome behaviors of co-workers, clients, or customers. This can include sexual comments or advances that make you feel uncomfortable. Provide a written report, and keep a copy. You can ask that the report be kept confidential.
If you are experiencing domestic violence, tell your employer. If you have a court order of protection, share it with your employer, along with a photo of your abuser. If you don't have a court order, your employer may be able to help you get one. Your employer may be able to help in others ways, too. For example, if your workplace has an employee assistance program (EAP), staff there can provide support and resources.
Remember that you deserve to feel safe at work and your employer has a responsibility to help keep you safe.