Women and Media Collective Press Conference on Violence Against Women

The Women and Media Collective held a press conference last week to address the incidence of violence against women with regard to the ‘grease devil’ phenomenon. The Collective also stressed that it wanted a ‘clear dialogue’ on the matter in order to militate against sensational reportage as well as further trivialisation of the issue.

The main points expressed by the Collective were the following:

- The State has an obligation to ensure the protection of women, to set about establishing impartial investigations and strengthen law enforcement, particularly with respect to the ability of the police to maintain law and order.
- “If women are insecure, it is also an indictment on the community and our society at large. We want law enforcement to work closely with communities and strengthen mechanisms that would ensure safety of communities”.
- It is necessary to avoid the “policing of women in the guise of dealing with this issue”, particularly to prevent restriction or confinement. This is important in order to recognise that women have responsibilities and assume an important role in their respective families and communities.
- Comprehensive investigations are required to prevent the repetition of incidents.
- The need to build confidence within our communities and for elected representatives to engage with their constituencies.
- The media has a responsibility to avoid sensational reportage and reduce levels of hysteria.
- The need for communities to work with law enforcement agencies in a manner that strengthens community trust.

Women and Media Collective Press Conference – 17th August 2011 from Centre for Policy Alternatives on Vimeo.

  • Punithavathi

    Quite frankly, until men become involved in the women’s rights movement, we will keep running in circles. It is aggravatingly frustrating. Men must join by the droves to champion these issues. Key to the future of our society is the mutual agreement – by both men and women – to move beyond victim-blaming. A survivor of assault will always question what she could have done to have prevented it from taking a place. Women who are afraid will take pre-emptive actions, such as staying indoors, to avoid such assault. These behaviors foster a sense of increased paranoia and it resolves NOTHING. This is not to say that these behaviors are irrational, simply that they do not address the issue and that they are unsustainable.

  • Ethirveerasingam

    Groundviews and the Panel
    Thank you for giving voice to the women to speak on behalf of the women victims. I would like for the victims and those women who are in the proximity to the Victims to be involved in a Panel discussion. If necessary through recorded interviews. They may have answers to the kind of protection they need and want from law enforcement officials who are independent of the Army.
    Can women groups and men groups organise and give training to women in vulnerable areas Karate and other Martial arts and defencive skills to defend themselves?

    The women Mayor of Jaffna, Kilinochchi and Women parliamentarians, especially from where the women are attacke could be interviewed to get their ideas to protect women and most importantly empower them legally and otherwise.