International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women
Neuruppin, 25 November 2022
This Friday, 25 November 2022, is the day to draw worldwide attention to continuing violence against women. The MHB joins the international campaign "ORANGE THE WORLD" initiated by UN Women. A flag was raised in front of the main building of the university hospital as a public signal against violence on women.
MHB president Prof. Hans-Uwe Simon underlines everybody’s fundamental right to a life free of violence; but: "One out of three women in Germany is affected by violence. Security agencies register at least one murder attempt per day, and every third day a woman is killed by her partner or ex-partner. During the pandemic, Brandenburg registered a 20% increase in domestic violence, with female victims in 71% of cases. Physicians, psychotherapists and other professional groups at the MHB, in hospitals and medical practices are confronted with the need to deal with the consequences of violence.”
MHB vice president Prof. Irene Hinterseher adds: “Showing our colours with this flag against violence is one thing. More important to the MHB executive board is, however, to inform colleagues, staff and students about specific forms of assistance available at the MHB. Our Equality Commissioners can serve as first contact points. The website offers contact data for further university services that offer information and support.”
Sexualised violence, primarily against women, is a universal crime. It can take many different forms, ranging from gender bias in families, institutions, states and society to immediate physical abuse such as sexual harassment, assault and rape. Representative studies show that 25% of women experience sexual and/or physical abuse in their partnership, 50% are confronted with sexualised discrimination at work and 42% experience psychological violence.
Many perpetrators remain unpunished, among other things because sensitivity to this type of human rights violations is still insufficient, victims are unable to identify such acts as violence and/or do not feel sufficiently supported. There are also men experiencing sexual abuse, but significantly less often and mainly at work. More frequent are instances of discrimination in the lives of persons who based on their sexual identity do not correspond to socially prevailing norms: homosexual, transgender and nonbinary individuals are by no means generally accepted so that further awareness-building appears imperative, also in terms of intersectionality.
Intersectionality describes the overlapping or concurrence of discriminating factors such as age, handicap, ethnic or cultural background affecting an individual. Ranging from healthcare and jobs at living wage level to political power: the list of areas where equal opportunities for all genders have yet to be achieved is long. The work of equal opportunity officers in all institutions constitutes one element in the general effort to proactively oppose all forms of violence against people.
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