European & International News

Due Diligence Project: regional reports now available

[Brussels, 4 March 2014] The Due Diligence and State Responsibility
to Eliminate Violence against Women report will be launched on Thursday 13 March 2014, during the CSW in New York. Six regional reports are already available on the website.

The Due Diligence Project is a research-advocacy project started three years ago so as to add content to the international principle of ‘Due Diligence’ of the States to end violence against women. Concretely, it aims at evaluating the positions of most of the States all over the world, to identify good practices and to create compliance indicators that are concrete and measurable across regions.

The concept of ‘Due Diligence’ refers to the State’s obligation to take reasonable action to Prevent, Protect against, Prosecute, Punish and Provide redress for violence against women.

So as to be the most precise and exhaustive as possible, the research has been led in six regions: Asia-Pacific, Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean, Middle East and North Africa, and North America. In each one, except for North America, approximately 6/10 countries have been selected to reflect the diversity of the region.

The European report has been done by the European Women’s Lobby and Bulgarian Gender Research Foundation, with input of NGOs from Croatia, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Kazakhstan, Poland, Spain and Ukraine, mostly gathered with the help of experts of the EWL Observatory on Violence against Women. It shows that in general, the 5 Ps are far from being satisfyingly addressed by the European countries.

However, it varies significantly between countries.

  • For instance: less than 40% of the DDP survey respondents answered in the affirmative on the existence of prevention programmes for rape and sexual assault. In the past, only 11 of 27 EU member states launched an awareness-raising and/or prevention campaign on sexual violence. There are few support services for victims/survivors of rape (Ireland being an exemplary exception on that issue).
  • The higher difficulties encountered by some groups of vulnerable women, such as migrant women, or women with disabilities, are not addressed enough, if not at all. Similarly, more measures should tackle the issues of abuse of girls, sexual harassment, female genital mutilations or forced marriages.
  • Prosecution, punishment and reparation, were particularly difficult to inform. It shows that the main focus of NGOs is on preventing violence and protecting the victims, than on implementing the law and making sure that aggressors are convicted and punished.

The result of this project, presenting the global and regional reports, is now available on its website.

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