The AGM held on 24th April came after an incredible year of campaigning successes for our coalition. The AGM was chaired by EVAW’s new Co-Chairs Huda Jawad and Professor Aisha K. Gill.
Huda has been working within the women’s sector since 2010 and is the Coordinator for the SAFE Communities Programme at Standing Together Against Domestic Violence as well as a co-organiser of the Women’s March London. Huda is an intersectional Muslim feminist and is a member of Musawah, the global movement for equality and justice in the Muslim family and a 2017 Clore Social Fellow.
Huda has emerged as an energetic and vocal leader in the women’s movement, speaking out about the racist-misogyny revealed in the treatment of Shamima Begum on Woman’s Hour and calling for a new approach to intersectional feminist leadership. “I take every opportunity to campaign, challenge and influence both the political establishment and the cultural norms of the communities that I live in to fight for the right of women to be seen as equal members of society and to live a life free from violence and abuse”
Aisha is Professor of Criminology at University of Roehampton where her main areas of interest and research are health and criminal justice responses to violence against Black, Minority Ethnic and Refugee (BMER) women in the UK, Iraqi Kurdistan, India and Pakistan. She has been involved in addressing the problem of violence against women and girls, ‘honour’ crimes and forced marriage at grassroots level for 20 years. Aisha has published widely on the murder of women in the name of ‘honour’, femicide, early/child/forced marriage, child sexual exploitation, the policing of sexual abuse in South Asian communities, Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and sex-selective abortions.
Aisha is an adviser to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) strategic support group on investigations and complaints involving gendered forms of violence against women in the UK and was Chair of Newham Asian Women’s Project (2004-2009). She has extensive experience of providing expert advice to the Government, Home Office, Ministry of Justice, Criminal Justice System and the voluntary sector on legal policy issues related to ‘honour- based’ violence/abuse, ‘honour’ killings, forced marriage and FGM. She has challenged politicians to be more inclusive of BMER women’s voices in policy-making on issues of gender-based violence and human rights. “If we are to tackle VAWG in its myriad forms, we must acknowledge commonalities without ignoring diversity: critically, we must address the complex ways in which inequality and discrimination can affect our efforts to eradicate this violence.”
Huda and Aisha succeed Professor Liz Kelly CBE and Marai Larasi MBE who stepped down as long standing Co-Chairs, overseeing EVAW’s transition into a leading organisation campaigning on Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) issues in the UK. Members and trustees expressed their enormous gratitude for the work of these incredible women.
At the AGM members also voted for Gurpreet Virdee and Marianna Tortell to join the board.
Gurpreet has worked in the women’s sector for more than 24 years, the last 9 of which has been Director of Operations and Development at Women and Girls Network. “I am a black feminist with a strong personal and political commitment to challenging and redressing the injustices and inequalities faced by women and girls.”
Marianna has worked in women-led VAWG organisations for almost 25 years in Aotearoa/New Zealand, Malta and the UK and as well as work with survivors, she has experience and knowledge of behaviour change work with perpetrators. “All of my work and activism is firmly grounded within feminist, anti-discriminatory practice and I am committed to creating a world without violence and abuse.”
Trustees and members thanked departing trustees Marai Larasi, Carys Afoko, Catherine Chilcott and Camille Kumar for all of their hard work and commitment to EVAW.
The 2017/18 annual report and accounts was approved at the AGM and the next AGM will be held before the end of the year.