Elimination and prevention of all forms of violence against women and girls was the priority theme of the 57th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW57) held at United Nations Headquarters from 4 to 15 March. At this apt venue, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), UN Women and UNV presented the latest research from their Partners for Prevention Regional Joint Programme at the side event Why do men use violence and how do we stop it? New evidence on mens use of violence against women and girls and its uses for enhanced prevention.
"We know men are the primary perpetrators of violence. But not all men use violence and many men oppose it. To stop violence before it starts we need to understand the root causes of mens use of violence, why some men are more likely to use different types of violence and also why some men oppose it," said James Lang, Programme Coordinator of Partners for Prevention.
Coordinated by Partners for Prevention, a UNDP, UNFPA, UN Women and UNV regional joint programme for gender-based violence prevention in Asia and the Pacific, and co-sponsored by the Australian Government, Government of Sweden and the World Health Organization (WHO), the side event shared cutting edge new knowledge from a collaborative multi-country study focused on mens use and experiences of violence against women and girls.
In this study, 10,178 men from selected sites in Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea and Sri Lanka responded to representative population-based household surveys. These men were asked about their childhoods, relationships, health, sexual practices, gender attitudes and use of violence against women and girls. The study thus provides ground-breaking new knowledge on how to effectively prevent violence against women and girls.
Focusing on the preliminary research findings, a panel of experts discussed the implications of the findings and how they can be applied to enhance prevention programmes and policies. Specifically the panel highlighted what men have said about their uses and experiences of different types of violence, and what we can do in the future to stop it before it starts.
This research offers us great hope, said Ghulam Isaczai, Chief of UNVs Development Division. We now need to adapt and apply more effective programmes and policies based on the evidence of what works and better coordinate all of the work on response to and prevention of violence.
It is overwhelming when we think of the number of women and girls who suffer some form of violence in their lifetime. But violence is preventable; it is not inevitable, he concluded, reiterating the event's recurring theme.
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