November 28, 2022

16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence

16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence is a global campaign that calls for an end to violence against women and girls. The annual international campaign begins on the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women – 25 November, and concludes on Human Rights Day – 10 December.

The campaign was started by activists at the Women’s Global Leadership Institute in 1991, and continues to provide a spotlight every year for campaigns working to prevent and eliminate gender-based violence. We often think of violence as a physical act causing physical harm. But for girls around the world, violence has many faces. It can be subtle and not easily recognised, but still deeply damaging.

Gender inequality is one of the primary drivers of gender-based violence and family violence. We also know that other intersecting forms of discrimination – including racism, ageism, homophobia, transphobia, and colonialism – are further drivers of violence.

In Australia right now, the statistics show that:

  • One in four women have experienced violence by an intimate partner since the age of 15.
  • Nearly two in five women with disabilities have experienced violence from a partner, ex-partner or family member.
  • One in three LGBTIQ+ people have experienced violence from a partner, ex-partner or family member.
  • One in three migrant and refugee women living in Australia have experienced family violence.
  • 95 per cent of all victims of violence, regardless of gender, experience violence from a male perpetrator.

Respect Victoria is also conducting a Respect Women: ‘Call it Out (Respect Is)’ campaign, to coincide with 16 Days of Activism, which showcases messages of respect, support and equality, and will feature stories and messages from everyday Victorians who are creating change in their communities.

“This is a time for us all to reflect on gender inequality and social norms which excuse and exacerbate gender-based violence and bring an end to inequity, discrimination and abuse. Choosing to lead with respect in our relationships can ultimately prevent violence against women and girls,” said Tanya Ellis, Strengthening Hospital Response to Family Violence Project Manager at Northern Health.

Respect is the building block of all healthy relationships and is offered, exchanged and received in the places we spend our time – homes, schools, workplaces, sporting clubs and more. Violence against women and girls is a devastating act of disrespect and a pervasive breech of human rights.

We can all play a role in preventing gender-based violence in all its forms – so join us by leading with respect, and calling out discrimination. Northern Health invites you to get involved by:

  • Visiting the information display in the main foyer for further information and resources.
  • Wear something orange throughout the campaign.
  • ‘Call it out’ and share a brief story of how you have called out disrespectful behaviour toward women and email:
  • Purchase a pair of ‘Respect Women’ earrings - designed, laser cut and hand-painted by proud Wiradjuri woman Kristy Dickinson, founder of Haus of Dizzy. These special edition earrings were created by Haus of Dizzy in collaboration with Respect Victoria – Haus of Dizzy website.