Last year, we participated in the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence with a series of blog posts. This year, we are partnering with the Australian Human Rights Institute at UNSW Sydney and Ambedkar University Delhi to bring you a blogathon over the full 16 days, 25 Nov – 10 Dec 2018. The theme for this year’s UN 16 Days campaign is #HearMeToo. We have created a special website which will publish the blog posts every day and act as an archive beyond the 16 days of the blogathon.
The first post, 25 Nov, introduces this year’s project and provides more context around this year’s campaign. It was written by Fiona Mackay (University of Edinburgh), Louise Chappell (University of New South Wales), and Krishna Menon (Ambedkar University Delhi). You can read it here: https://16daysblogathon.wordpress.com/2018/11/25/day-one-introduction/
The second post, 26 Nov, was written by Laurel Weldon, professor of political science at Simon Fraser University, Vancouver. Weldon writes about the ongoing need for world-wide activism to eradicate violence against women. You can find an extract below, and the full blog post here: https://16daysblogathon.wordpress.com/2018/11/26/day-two-no-room-for-complacency-the-ongoing-need-for-world-wide-activism-to-eradicate-violence-against-women/
Extract from: No room for complacency: the ongoing need for world-wide activism to eradicate violence against women, originally published on 16daysblogathon.wordpress.com
Over the past few decades, feminist activity has spread to more than a hundred countries in both old (street marches and ), and new forms (e.g. the exploding digital activism of the #metoo movement). This past success, however, does not justify complacency about the inevitability of progress on women’s rights, which continues to be strongly contested around the world. Indeed, the spread of feminist activism has increased the frequency of state repression specifically focused on women’s organizing; and transnational campaigns funded by donors in rich countries have pushed opposition to what they call “gender ideology,” sponsoring initiatives to resist and roll back attitudinal and policy changes in women’s rights, LGBTQ rights, and related areas.
Across the world we are witnessing an atmosphere of backlash to efforts to address broader gender equality efforts and campaigns to address violence against women and the LGBTIQ community. Resistance to progressive schools curricula designed to improve acceptance and awareness of gender inequality and LGBTQ rights has emerged in Peru on the Con Mis Hijos No Te Metas (“don’t mess with my kids”) campaign, and is a phenomenon in Colombia, Mexico, France, Poland, and Canada and Australia. In the USA, recent reports indicate the Trump Administration is seeking to remove the word “gender” from UN documents and domestically, erasing LGBTQ people from websites and other government documents.
At the same time, funding for women’s initiatives is declining. Development assistance targeted to women has declined 20% overall. Similarly, funding from the USA, a major source of funding for women’s organizations worldwide, has also declined. This decline means a loss of material support for women-focused initiatives, including vital resources for anti-violence against women initiatives.