Today, on the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, the Australian Government reiterates its commitment to ending violence against women and girls in all its forms.
Violence against women and girls is a grave violation of their human rights. It strikes at the heart of families, communities and countries. Violence against women is a threat to peace and security, driving inequality and costing billions. A gender-equal world, in which women and girls can reach their full potential free from violence, is a core priority of Australia’s foreign policy and development partnerships.
Today also marks the start of 16 Days of Activism to End Gender Based Violence, a global campaign to galvanise action to end violence against women and girls.
The Australian Government pledges to work together for a world without violence. Over the past decade, Australia’s development programs have invested more than $300 million in overseas programs to prevent gender-based violence and provide support to survivors.
We support women’s movements and human rights defenders advocating to stop violence before it begins. We work with local communities to develop and deliver programs to transform attitudes that normalise violence. We provide safe places in times of crisis, and work to end harmful practices and human trafficking. We also support survivors to access vital services, such as counselling and health care, safe housing and access to justice.
I am pleased to announce that in early 2019 the Office of Development Effectiveness will release a major strategic evaluation of Australia’s assistance to end violence against women and girls in Asia and the Pacific.
The evaluation will provide a road map for our work to end violence against women and girls over the next 10 years and builds on the seminal 2008 Evaluation of Violence Against Women and Girls in Melanesia and Timor-Leste.