Chile and UNODC together in the fight against gender violence

12 April, 2011 - Representatives from the Government of Chile, civil society organizations, the Public Safety Center of the University of Chile (CESC), and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) for Brazil and the Southern Cone participated, this Tuesday, 12, in an Interinstitutional Table on Attention Services to Gender Violence Victims. The meeting is part of the project "Strengthening of Women's Police and Civil Society to Combat Gender Violence in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay".

The idea is that by the end of July this year, public security agents of Chile have a training manual to assist victims of gender violence in the country.

To prepare the manual there will be a complete diagnosis on the flow of services to victims of gender violence in the country. The diagnosis will be part of a series of studies conducted in the Southern Cone countries, aiming at a closer view of the reality of gender violence in the region and to facilitate the process of cooperation to elaborate programs that deal with gender based violence.

Despite important outcomes in the past 20 years, through the enactment of legislation on rights and legal protection of women and children, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay still report high rates of crime and violence against women, including rape. In all these countries, gender violence tends to be underreported. Frequently, shame, stigma and fear make the victim give up on denouncing and filing complaint forms.

The Strengthening of Women's Police and Civil Society Project has the support of the UN Entity for Gender Equality and Empowerment of Women (UN Women) and aims to improve the capacity of countries to offer support to victims of gender violence through knowledge and awareness among government officials and civil society on issues related to violence against women.

Gender violence is a human rights violation that directly affects one third of women worldwide and indirectly affects everyone. Each year, millions of women are victims of beatings, rapes, torture, intimidation, humiliation and discrimination, either by strangers or more often by partners or relatives.

Violence against women occurs independent of race, religion, income, class, culture or age. It is not limited to a particular political or economic system, but permeates all societies in the world, to the point that millions of women consider violence a way of life.

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