Human Rights Council: LWF calls for increased efforts to combat violence against women


Religious communities provide vital support to survivors

(LWI) – In a statement to the United Nations Human Rights Council, the Lutheran World Federation (LWF) called for increased efforts to address violence against women.

Introducing the statement on June 28, Sikhonzile Ndlovu, LWF Advocacy Officer for Gender Justice, highlighted the role of religious communities and faith-based organizations in working to raise awareness, engage in advocacy efforts and to support survivors.

“Violence against women transcends race, religion, ethnicity, age, sexual orientation and social class,” Ndlovu told LWI. “As a faith-based Christian organization, the LWF stands ready to work with ecumenical partners and lay organizations to intensify efforts to end this scourge.

Declaration on violence against women

The Lutheran World Federation is deeply concerned about the alarming rate of violence against women around the world.

1 in 3 women experience physical or sexual violence in her lifetime. Adolescent girls are at higher risk globally, with 1 in 10 or around 120 million girls having experienced “forced sex or other forced sex acts” at some point in their lives. Of these, at least 15 million alone have been raped.

All over the world, rights holders grapple with the long-term effects of violence against women, including physical and emotional pain, trauma, unwanted pregnancies and even loss of life.

To combat violence against women and promote human rights for all, religious communities and faith-based organizations must play a central role. They provide a vital contribution to raising awareness, training and implementing collective advocacy efforts and supporting survivors.

We therefore ask this council to:

Redouble efforts to fight violence against women.

Include religious actors in efforts to end violence against women given their capacity and awareness of survivors.

Ensure that member states hold perpetrators accountable and implement policies and legislation to end violence against women.

And we call on Member States to:

Cooperate fully with United Nations human rights bodies and mandates to promote the protection of the human rights of women and end violence against women.

Adopt survivor-centered approaches, including appropriate health services and psychosocial and economic support for survivors.

By the FLM / A. Weyermüller

Video: Declaration on violence against women | Human Rights Council 2021

The 47th ordinary session of the United Nations Human Rights Council takes place from June 21 to July 13, 2021.

The LWF participates in its sessions through statements, side events and other activities. This is an integral part of LWF’s advocacy work.

LWF Gender Justice


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