Violence against women and girls is one of the most intractable and complex issues on the global policy agenda that will affect one out of three women during her lifetime. According to the United Nations, this phenomenon is a major obstacle to achieving equality, development, and peace. To build a collective response, the National Council for Research on Women, in partnership with the US National Committee for UN Women (previously, UNIFEM USNC), gathered experts at Hunter College in New York for a joint conference (June 11-12, 2010).
The Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report is the U.S. Government’s principal diplomatic tool to engage foreign governments on human trafficking. It is also the world’s most comprehensive resource of governmental anti-human trafficking efforts and reflects the U.S. Government’s commitment to global leadership on this key human rights and law enforcement issue. It represents an updated, global look at the nature and scope of trafficking in persons and the broad range of government actions to confront and eliminate it. The U.S. Government uses the TIP Report to engage foreign governments in dialogues to advance anti-trafficking reforms and to combat trafficking and to target resources on prevention, protection and prosecution programs. Worldwide, the report is used by international organizations, foreign governments, and nongovernmental organizations alike as a tool to examine where resources are most needed.
As a participant at the nongovernmental organization forum that accompanied the United Nations Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing in 1995, I witnessed a delegation of Korean "comfort women" survivors who were trying to call attention to their victimization as sex slaves for the Japanese military during World War II.
By then, they were no longer young and some indeed looked frail, but they made a powerful and striking presence to demand recognition of their history.
In the early 1990s, Kim Hak Soon was the first former comfort woman to speak out, at the age of 67, and her testimony inspired other women to do the same. Within one year more than 200 other Korean women who had been enslaved as comfort women came forward. They have joined together, supported each other and shared their experience.
A local monument to these brave women was the subject of a startling May 19 story in The New York Times. The first surprise was my own ignorance of the monument, just across the Hudson River from New York City, in Palisades Park, N.J., where more than half of the population is of Korean descent. Since it's the only one of its kind in the U.S., it seemed strange that it had not attracted widespread publicity and become a major pilgrimage site for women's advocates.
Reports on a study published in the American Journal of Public Health that found that female sex workers living in and operating from supportive-housing units have less adversarial relationships with police and were exposed to less violence and disease, such as HIV.
Female sex workers living in and operating from supportive-housing units have less adversarial relations with police, says a new study.
The study was published Wednesday in the "American Journal of Public Health" and was authored by researchers from the University of B.C. and the BC Centre for Excellence in HIV-AIDS.
Based on interviews with 39 women living on Vancouver's Downtown Eastside, the study also found female sex workers living in the housing units were exposed to less violence and disease, such as HIV.
The study was released just a month after Ontario's top court struck down a ban on bawdy houses.
It also comes amid the inquiry into serial killer Robert Pickton, which has heard the poor relationship between sex workers and police makes them reluctant to report abuse.
"I think it's actually providing a really important opportunity for sex workers to actually feel safe to reach out to police for protection rather than feeling constantly criminalized," said Kate Shannon, senior author and assistant professor of medicine at UBC.
According to the study, the women lived in supportive-housing programs run by the Atira Women's Resource Society and RainCity Housing and Support Society on the Downtown Eastside.
The housing units operate on a harm-reduction model, meaning the women are given a place to live and pay rent, but what they do in their units is their business.
Security measure are in place and include women-only buildings, security cameras, front-desk sign-in procedures for guests and clients, and on-site staff who can call police in the event of violence.
Reauthorizing the once-bipartisan Violence Against Women Act used to be a matter of Senate routine, but it has now gone the way of debt-ceiling negotiations — into the trenches of partisan warfare. Reading recent reports of the coming Capitol Hill showdown on the VAWA, you would either conclude that Republicans are broadening their assault on women, or Democrats have politicized the bill with various poison pills involving LGBT rights, immigration and Native American communities. What gets lost in both explanations is the merits of the actual changes.
While VAWA has not yet faced a full Senate vote, all Republicans on the Judiciary Committee voted in February against reauthorization. Democrats are clearly trying to use this to capitalize on the recent interest in Republican misogyny, which, legislatively speaking, has become mainstreamed in the party. Sen. Dianne Feinstein asserted on the Senate floor last week that “This is one more step in the removal of rights for women.” Majority Leader Mitch McConnell shot back Thursday, citing a Politico article to suggest Sen. Chuck Schumer “is sitting up at night trying to figure out a way to create an issue where there isn’t one … to help Democrats get reelected.”
Two years after an earthquake devastated Haiti, a report detailing the impact of sexual exploitation on displaced Haitian women and girls has been released. The report is authored by MADRE, the Commission of Women Victims for Victims (KOFAVIV), the International Women’s Human Rights (IWHR) Clinic at the City University of New York (CUNY) School of Law, the Global Justice Clinic at NYU School of Law (GJC) and the Center for Gender & Refugee Studies at UC Hastings College of the Law (CGRS).
The drastic increase in sexual violence in displacement camps has been well documented since the disaster. But another face of the epidemic has emerged as a pressing issue: the sexual exploitation of displaced women and girls.
Too many vulnerable foreign national women are locked up for non-violent crimes and have often been trafficked or coerced into offending, according to a briefing by the Prison Reform Trust and the charity FPWP Hibiscus.
Women from foreign countries are one of the fastest growing groups in the female prison population and represent one in seven of all the women held in custody in England and Wales. Drawing on the experience and work of Hibiscus with foreign national women in prison and kindly supported by the Barrow Cadbury Trust, the briefingreveals that coercion, intimidation, misinformation and threats are frequent factors behind the offending of this group.
China is witnessing an increasing number of foreign women who have been cheated, kidnapped and smuggled into the country, a senior official has said.
Most of these women are from rural areas in Vietnam, Myanmar and Laos. They eagerly want to find jobs in China or marry rich Chinese men to escape poverty, Chen Shiqu, director of the Ministry of Public Security's anti-human trafficking office, told China Daily in an exclusive interview.
"The number of foreign women trafficked to China is definitely rising," Chen said, without disclosing how many women have been rescued by Chinese police nationally.
However, in North China's Hebei province, police have rescued 206 trafficked foreign brides since April 2009, mainly from Vietnam, Myanmar, Laos, Thailand and Cambodia, according to figures from the provincial public security department.
Chen said the lack of natural barriers, such as rivers or mountains in the border areas between China and Southeast Asian countries, in addition to poverty in some regions in these countries, contribute to the rising trafficking of foreign women.
The victims are often sold in rural Chinese areas as brides of local villagers, or forced to provide sex services in underground prostitution dens in China's coastal or border areas such as Yunnan and Guangdong provinces, or Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region, he said. ...