The Women’s National Commission is a member of the End Violence Against Women (EVAW) Coalition Campaign, an unprecedented and growing group of organisations, including many of the leading women’s organisations working in the sector, the TUC, Amnesty International UK and the National Federation of Women’s Institutes.
The EVAW Coalition Campaign is the result of calls from the sector for Government to act on its commitment to the Beijing Platform for Action (BPfA) Strategic Objective D.1 to ‘take integrated measures to prevent and eliminate violence against women’.
EVAW is calling on the Government, public bodies and others to develop an integrated and strategic approach, and concerted action, to end violence against women. If you would like to lend you or your organisations support to the campaign
One of the earliest products of this partnership was the report, What a Waste. The Case for an Integrated Violence Against Women Strategy, which was commissioned by the WNC, funded by AIUK and authored by the Child and Women Abuse Studies Unit. The report argued that current initiatives to tackle VAW tended to take place in ‘silos’: there is a clear separation in Government thinking between domestic violence, sexual violence, forced marriage, rape, trafficking, killings in the name of honour, stalking and other forms of VAW. It states that in order to tackle VAW effectively, action must be based on the recognition that all the different forms of VAW are connected/integrated (as formally recognised already by Scotland and some local authorities) and the response to it should be similarly integrated. 'What a Waste' also argues that a VAW strategy must include: a commitment to prevention/a long-term approach; clear and measurable goals/priorities, coordinated measures addressing the various forms of abuse; and monitoring the impact of interventions on the prevalence and seriousness of abuse, to benefit both women and the Government.
The Coalition has also responded to the Governments consultation on the development of the Public Sector Duty to Promote Gender Equality.
Making the Grade Report
In November 2005, as a follow-on from “What a Waste”, the EVAW Coalition Campaign, produced Making the Grade? An independent analysis of Government initiatives on violence against women (external link), which was the first in what is to be an annual examination of Government departments’ performance in tackling VAW. The report highlighted the lack of coordination between departments and that many do not understand the relevance of VAW to their work. This report process was repeated this year, when The End Violence Against Women Campaign published Making the Grade? the second annual independent analysis of Government initiatives on violence against women on 23rd November 2006 and the Executive Summary Making the Grade .
- The UK Government should develop an overarching strategy and action plan to end violence against women. This should be developed by a Project Board and be accompanied by a time limited Expert Reference Group representing different forms of VAW, to advise the Board on developing the Strategy.
- A national independent Observatory on violence against women should be established to monitor progress, and to create a mechanism of accountability for Government.