25 November 2016
International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women
Today marks the International day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and the start of the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-based Violence.
These events aim to raise awareness of gender-based violence, and spearhead efforts to prevent and address the issue.
‘Violence against women is never acceptable,’ said Australian High Commissioner Andrew Byrne.
‘Yet we know that in Solomon Islands and in Australia there continue to be high rates of violence against women.
‘Violence against women negatively impacts families and communities. It can also have an inter-generational impact on affected children and put undue strain on key service providers, such as the health, education and justice systems.’
Australia is helping to addressing gender-based violence in Solomon Islands.
Australian support is helping change attitudes and behaviours in communities, enabling key service providers such as the Family Support Centre to provide lifesaving services to survivors of violence, and helping Solomon Islands Government to progress core activities such as management of Safenet and implementation of the Family Protection Act. We are also working with the private sector to help businesses strengthen their approach to addressing domestic violence and to reduce barriers for women seeking to participate in the formal economy.
Importantly, the Australian High Commission is also looking at what we can do for our own staff.
Last month, the Australian High Commission launched its own family and domestic violence policy, ensuring a consistent, supportive and equitable approach to staff that may be experiencing family and domestic violence.
‘Ending violence against women in Solomon Islands will require a sustained commitment over many decades,’ the High Commissioner said.
‘To this end, we encourage all Solomon Islanders to rally together to echo the call that violence against women should not and must not be tolerated.’