Diasporian News of Thursday, 14 March 2013
The International Labour Organisation (ILO) has noted that gender based violence in the world of work represents an obstacle to development and implies significant costs for developing and developed countries economies.
“There should be consistency between labour codes and criminal, civil or family laws and other bodies of law covering not only sanctions, but also incentives to buy into the fight against violence at work based on sex of worker,” Mr Kevin Cassidy, Senior Communications and External Relations Officer, ILO Office for the UN, stated at New York.
Mr Cassidy who was presenting ILO statement in solidarity with the 57 Session of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women on-going at New York, said work place violence can impact interpersonal relations.
“Workplace violence and sexual harassment present a significant barrier to women accessing and progressing through the labour market, and therefore ILO will never stop working to eradicate it.
“ILO stands ready to assist its tripartite constituents and to cooperate fully with the whole UN family to ensure a world free from violence against women and girls,” he noted.
Mr Cassidy therefore urged governments to remove obstacles to women’s access to justice especially labour justice.
The Secretary General of Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) to the UN, Professor Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu said the Organisation believes that eliminating all violence against girls begins with eliminating all forms of discrimination against girls and women.
“Women and girls must be allowed to participate fully in economic, socially and political decision making. Women and girls must also be able to access educational and professional opportunities without fear.
“It is the duty and responsibility of governments to ensure that...we can no longer allow ignorance surrounding women’s rights, and FGM (Female Genital Mutilation) to be perpetuated by traditions and rituals disguised as religious teachings.
“These inhumane practices have survived for over centuries, and must be stopped,” Prof Ihsanoglu stated in a paper presented on his behalf for the OIC.
He noted that FGM is unfortunately only one of many cultural practices that are disguised as part of religious tradition.
“Child marriage and violence against women as well as other negative acts perpetuated are often misidentified as being part of Islamic tradition.
“Whereas they are part of the local tradition and we should raise awareness at the local level to delink these practices from religion.
“We must continue to support and empower women and girls, we must do our utmost to eliminate any impediments between them and their goals...women and girls should have equal access to all opportunities without any fear,” Prof Ihsanoglu stated.
The Holy See in a position paper reaffirmed its longstanding commitments to contribute to the elimination of violence perpetuated against women and girls through education, the support of women who are victims to violence, and more widely to promote a culture of respect for the cause of women’s freedom.