PHILIPSBURG–November 25 marked International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and launched the global awareness campaign of sixteen days of activism that will conclude on December 10, International Human Rights Day.
Minister Cornelius de Weever said on Thursday, “The 25th of every month has been designated as Orange Day by the UN Women campaign ‘Say No, UNiTE,’ which was launched in 2009 to mobilise civil society to magnify the impact of the campaign, UNiTE to End Violence against Women.
“Those who take part in the campaign all over the world are encouraged to wear a touch of orange in solidarity with the cause, as the colour symbolises a brighter future and a world free from violence against women and girls. The 2018 theme is Orange the World: #HearMeToo
“Every woman and girl deserves a life free from violence. I call on our communities to wear a touch of orange starting today for the next several days as part of 16 days of activism, to also show your solidarity with St. Maarten girls and women and those all around the world.
“Eliminating violence against St. Maarten women and girls requires all of us to take action. I would like to commend the Safe Haven Foundation for its November Domestic Violence Awareness Month campaign where it profiled the issue.
“Let us as a community work together in creating an environment of zero tolerance for any form of violence.”
Violence against women is as serious a cause of death and incapacity among women of reproductive age as cancer, and a greater cause of ill health than traffic accidents and malaria combined, according to figures of the United Nations (UN).
One in three women and girls experiences physical or sexual violence in her lifetime, most frequently by an intimate partner, UN figures show.
UN Women believe that violence against women and girls (VAWG) is one of the most widespread, persistent and devastating human rights violations in the world today and remains largely unreported due to the impunity, silence, stigma and shame surrounding it.
In general terms, it manifests itself in physical, sexual and psychological forms, encompassing intimate partner violence (battering, psychological abuse, marital rape, femicide); sexual violence and harassment (rape, forced sexual acts, unwanted sexual advances, child sexual abuse, forced marriage, street harassment, stalking, cyber- harassment); human-trafficking (slavery, sexual exploitation); female genital mutilation; and child marriage.