The International Campaign to Stop Rape & Gender Violence in Conflict stands in solidarity with women's organizations in Haiti asking the local government to pass new legislation to stop rape and gender violence. Sign the petition in support of Haiti's women demanding justice!
Sexual violence against women and girls is a longstanding problem in Haiti. Three years after the devastating earthquake, many women continue to live in insecure conditions - those in displacement camps have become particularly vulnerable to attacks. Haiti’s laws on gender violence are in dire need of updating. Women who suffer abuse have difficulty accessing justice and support because of weak, inconsistent and discriminatory laws.
Grassroots women have organized to help survivors and end the violence. The Campaign has supported Malya Villard-Appolon, founder of KOFAVIV, the Commission of Women Victims for Victims. KOFAVIV is leading the push for legislative reform with Campaign partner MADRE. The proposed New Draft Penal Code (Avant-Projet de Code Penal) will soon be introduced to Parliament by the Women’s Ministry. This bill would:
- Clarify and expand the definition of rape, incest and sexual violence
- Ensure training for medical and legal professionals tackling violence against women
- Outline the government’s obligations to both victims and perpetrators
The legal reform would provide an important framework for ending impunity for sexual violence in the post-earthquake reconstruction. The International Campaign to Stop Rape & Gender Violence in Conflict asks the international community to sign the petition supporting efforts to pass this bill into law:
To Haitian women's rights activists:
As people dedicated to women’s rights in Haiti and worldwide, we support your call for action to end violence against women and girls. We echo your demand for urgent passage of the new legal reform effort.
Every person has the right to a life free of violence. As women in Haiti, you know the violent threats that you confront, and you are organizing to create solutions. We stand with you in support of legal reform that will create a roadmap to enhance the obligations of the Haitian government to combat violence against women.
Sign the international petition on MADRE's website: I Stand With Haitian Women for Legal Protection Against Violence.
The Safety of Haitian Girls and Women Should Be Our Goal, Huffington Post blog, 14 January 2013.
Haiti eyes tougher law to tackle sexual violence, TrustLaw, 16 February 2012.
Beyond Shock, Charting the landscape of sexual violence in post-quake Haiti: Progress, Challenges & Emerging Trends 2010-2012 (abridged version), Anne-christine d’Adesky with PotoFanm+Fi, November 2012.
Aftershocks: Women Speak Out Against Sexual Violence in Haiti’s Camps, Amnesty International, January 2011.