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Jordan Joins the World today in Celebrating the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women
Jordan Joins the World today in Celebrating the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women
Wednesday, 25 November 2020

Jordan and the world celebrate today the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, which falls on November 25 of each year. The theme for this year is: “Orange the World: Fund, Respond, Prevent, Collect ".  

The Secretary General of the Higher Population Council, Dr. Abla Amawi, highlighted in a press release that 46% of women and 69% of men believe that beating a wife is justified. According to the Population and Family Health Survey (2017-2018) the figures on violence are concerning as 21% of ever-married women (ages 15-49 years) were subjected to physical violence at least once since the age of 15, and 2% were exposed to physical violence during pregnancy. 26% of ever-married women (ages 15-49) have ever experienced spousal physical, sexual, or emotional violence. 24% of ever-married women who have experienced spousal physical or sexual violence reported injuries; 22% reported cuts, bruises, or aches, and 8% reported eye injuries, sprains, dislocations, or burns, whereas 15% of ever-married women have experienced at least three controlling behaviors by their husbands.

Amawi pointed out that violence against women around the world has increased since the Covid-19 outbreak. During this exceptional period, rates of domestic violence increased due to forced coexistence and complete isolation with a violent person, as well as limited availability and access to violence protection services due to movement restrictions. Domestic violence rates increased during lockdown by 33% compared to the same period last year, as reported by the Director of the Family Protection Department. The number of domestic violence cases that social service offices in the Family Protection Department dealt with reached (1,685) cases in March, April and May. On the other hand, the majority of respondents (69%) to the Rapid Assessment of the Impact of Covid-19 on Gender Based Violence agreed that gender based violence has increased since the beginning of the pandemic. The findings of the assessment indicate that access to services for violence survivors as well as access to SRH services has become more difficult than before. Furthermore, 71% of women, girls, men and boys experience worry and anxiety, while adult women in particular reported high levels of worry at 78%. The situation becomes more complicated for women refugees and migrants, as the rate of cases of violence, particularly domestic violence, reported by women and girls have noticeably increased.

Amawi stressed the need for measures to combat gender-based violence on all levels including the enabling environment level, the institutional level and the community level. Amawi added that it is essential to improve planning and gender responsive budgeting frameworks to ensure the availability of adequate financial resources and procedures to strengthen and enable interagency cooperation, improve case reporting and referral mechanisms, build the capacity of staff, establish data collection systems and enhance human and financial capabilities of national women organizations to coordinate monitoring and advocacy for combating violence against women.

On the other hand, HPC affirmed that this day is intended to urge countries to combat violence through four pillars. The “funding” pillar requires prioritizing funding for the minimum initial services package for gender-based violence, and GBV prevention and response in international humanitarian work. The second pillar is response and focuses on taking clear measures to maintain the services offered to GBV survivors and ensuring that criminal justice response is adequately sufficient through relevant legislation. The third pillar is protection and aims to launch a social mobilization campaign to change attitudes towards GBV and gender inequality, whereas the fourth pillar “data collection” focuses on improving the quality and monitoring of indicators and programs for combating GBV.