Beginning on November 25th and ending on December 10th is a movement of 16 days of activism. As global awareness rises, millions of people have shown support for a campaign that speaks out against gender-based violence. From the viral hashtag #MeToo to the accusations against prominent media, social, and political figures around the world, we are seeing women breaking their silence about the abuses and mistreatment they have undergone.
According to UN Women’s Global Database on Violence against Women, 1 in every 3 women experience some form of violence in their lifetime. In recognition of this fact, this year’s theme is “Leave No One Behind – End Violence against Women, “which seeks to eradicate violence against women and reduce the number of abuse instances. Ending violence against women is possible and the world has to come together to be able to eradicate it. According to UN Women, support must be gathered and shared by communities in order to promote effective laws and policies that punish offenders and advocates for the rights of women.
In San Cristóbal, Dominican Republic, hundreds of women joined the global movement in a march where they voiced their concerns about violence against women. An issue that has become epidemic in the country, violence against women has claimed over 170 lives every year, according with El Nuevo Diario newspaper. The women’s’ march was organized by Movimiento Campesino Dominicano (MCD), an organization that seeks to promote women’s rights and demands the creation of policies focused on the prevention of violence and education of the populace on the subject.
The MCD believes that the measures implemented by the government in recent years have not been sufficient to deal with the problem at hand. Sandra Daniela Rodriguez, who serves as spokesperson for the organization, points out that the problem is complex, but that it is indeed possible to highlight harmful behaviors in male-dominated societies and promote education in a way that teaches men to respect women and not view them as property.
Rodriguez has called for all of the citizens of the Dominican Republic to work together to defeat violence against women.