VAW-free community requires us all


Violence against women, also known as gender-based violence, are violent acts primarily committed against women or girls and is a grave violation of human rights. Across the globe, one out of three women experience some form of violence, most often physical and sexual.

The immediate and long-term impact that violence has on women is devastating. Violence against women has mental and physical consequences, and it can also prevent women from ever being able to fully live their lives or find a place of acceptance in society.

To make our community one that is free from violence against women, we must all do our part. Despite laws existing to protect women, it’s up to each and every person of all ages to stand up to VAW and ensure women everywhere can live safely, happily, and free from violence. 

This is my voice for the VAW community. To promote female empowerment, women must know their rights and realize they deserve equal treatment that is free from violence.

Women, know your rights
As a woman, you have the right to say no to a man.

As a woman, you can have a voice, even if it is an unpopular opinion.

As a woman, you are equal.

Women must appreciate themselves in society. Know your rights, embrace your equality, and don’t be afraid. If you have experienced violence or know someone who has, reach out to people that can help.

Men, do your part
Violence against women will not stop without men making changes too. The past patterns lead to future problems, so being active in preventing violence against women is imperative. 

But it is more than just being non-violent yourself. As men, changing the masculine culture we live in and promoting a society of equality is critical. When your friends joke about women, let them know it isn’t OK. If someone is catcalling a girl or making derogatory remarks, do your part to stop it.

Without men taking an active part, the violence will not stop.

Society, teach our children
The lessons we teach our children today are the values that they will hold tomorrow. As a society, we have to teach our children to value women and see the world through a lens of equality. That means parents, teach your children that everyone is equal. Uncles, tell your nephews how to properly treat a girl. Aunts, empower your nieces to be strong, independent women who aren’t afraid to stand up to themselves.

Whether you are a brother, sister, father, mother, aunt, uncle, or grandparent, you can do your part to teach those around you that violence is unacceptable.

Together we can end violence against women
It will not be easy, and it will not be instant, but the sooner we get started, the sooner we can make a difference. If you are a woman who has experienced violence, take control of your life and speak out. If you are a man, make a change and advocate for others to do so as well. Be a positive role model for those who need it. No matter what your position is in society, do your part to stop the violence.

Together we can create a VAW-free community and improve the lives of hundreds of millions of women across the globe.

Rosemarie D. Embile (Special to the Saipan Tribune)
Rosemarie D. Embile is a teacher at the Northern Marianas International School.

Rosemarie D. Embile (Special to the Saipan Tribune)
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