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Date Published
February 20, 2024

Last week (13th and 14th February 2024), the End Violence Against Women Coalition gave evidence to the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG), Reem Alsalem, as part of her visit to the UK to examine the government’s record on tackling this violence. This visit is an important opportunity for human rights bodies to scrutinise the government’s record in this area.

A Special Rapporteur is an independent expert appointed by the Human Rights Council to examine and report back on a country situation or specific human rights theme. As part of this role, the Special Rapporteur gathers information on VAWG from governments and other public bodies, as well as civil society, including women’s organisations.

EVAW and other specialist VAWG organisations were invited to attend roundtable meetings to share reflections on how well the government is delivering for women and girls in the UK today. We were able to speak to many of the issues highlighted in our snapshot report, such as the harmful impact of austerity policies on our public services and organisations providing specialist support, the challenges facing survivors in a broken criminal justice system, and the fall-out of attacks on our human rights.

Organisations at the roundtable also set out key recommendations reflected in our joint VAWG manifesto for the next general election, which calls for a whole-society approach to tackling VAWG:

  • Defending our human rights and addressing the discrimination and inequalities which create barriers to support and safety for the most marginalised survivors.
  • Sustainably funding the specialist VAWG sector, with a ring-fenced budget for services led ‘by and for’ Black and minoritised women and girls.
  • Putting prevention at the heart of the response to VAWG: challenging harmful social norms, supporting bystander interventions, holding perpetrators accountable and creating opportunities for behaviour change.

The Special Rapporteur’s findings and recommendations to the government and other stakeholders will be included in a report presented to the UN Human Rights Council in June 2024. However, we can expect to see her preliminary findings at a Press Conference in the coming days.



Date Published
February 20, 2024
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