EWL News

EWL Observatory on violence against women meets to discuss on strategies to foster implementation and monitoring of Istanbul Convention

[Brussels, 19 June 2017] On 7 and 8 June, the European Women’s Lobby (EWL) Observatory on violence against women held a strategic meeting and a Conference "Loud and United to end violence against women and girls". These events marked the 20th anniversary of the EWL Observatory, a unique structure that plays a key role in advising the EWL about the reality of violence against women in Europe. The EWL Observatory brings together a dynamic group of 35 women (professionals, women’s rights defenders, front-line NGOs activists, etc.) with outstanding experience and expertise in different forms of male violence against women.

EWL Observatory Group Picture

During its meeting, the Observatory experts discussed and strategised on key recent policy developments at national and European Level, such as the EU signature of the Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence, the Istanbul Convention. The experts had very fruitful discussions and shared good practices around campaigning for the ratification and implementation of the Istanbul Convention. The experts presented and analysed three campaigns:

  • Vanja Macanovic presented the "I sign" regional campaign;
  • Gwendolyne Sterk shared the main activities and the outcomes of the "IC change" campaign in the UK;
  • Lara Dimitrijevic presented the campaign in Malta for the implementation of the Istanbul Convention. She also presented the feminist analysis and awareness raising campaign on the consequences and implications of the reservations to apply article 59 of the Istanbul Convention referred to the residence status of victims of VAW.

During the EWL Observatory meeting, the experts had also the opportunity to discuss the GREVIO monitoring procedure and exchange good practice and advises on the NGO reporting on the implementation of the Istanbul Convention. Sophie Hansal (Austria); Lisa Homfjord (Denmark) and Selma Acuner (Turkey) presented the NGO reporting process in their three countries.

EWL Observatory Meeting 2
EWL Observatory meeting

Furthermore, the EWL experts had the opportunity to discuss key emerging issues, such as violence against women in the digital sphere. The EWL project #HerNetHerRights was presented and the EWL Observatory experts shared their expertise on the topic and discussed on a feminist analysis on the continuum of male violence online.

You can read below a blog post from Alexandra Ana, Romanian expert to EWL Observatory, where she gives her impression of the first day of the meeting.

"Yesterday, I participated to the EWL Observatory on violence against women and girls. Inspiring women of all over Europe gathered on the first day of EWL #LoudUnited Forum in Brussels. We synchronised our efforts to find new and innovative strategies to fight violence against women and girls in the context of the Istanbul Convention and its GREVIO Committee’s first country reports. A lot of hope and activism despite the particularly pessimistic political and social environment today, packed with anti-gender and anti-feminist mobilisations, the rise of extreme right parties and a continuous shrinking space for civil society."

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Loud and United to end violence against women and girls, European Women’s Lobby Conference, 6 December 2017, Brussels.

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