European Institute for Gender Equality Launches Anti-Femicide Campaign
November 25th marks International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. According to the European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE) 444 women across 10 EU member states were killed by their intimate partners in 2020.
To mark the day, the EIGE has issued a pack called Femicide: Name it, count it, end it! to all EU countries to assist them in gathering solid data to prevent femicide.
Femicide is the killing of women and girls because of their gender. It can include intentional homicides, such as the killing of women by their current or former partners, as well as unintentional killings, such as the death of a woman undergoing an unsafe abortion.
The Institute is calling for the building of a common understanding of what counts as a femicide. The pack contains information to help countries identify the different forms of femicide. It includes a classification system, as well as guidance on how to identify the ‘gender dimension’ of a female homicide.
While no EU Member State currently has a legal definition of femicide, some countries do recognise gendered motivations behind killings of women in their laws, for example because of hatred on the grounds of her sex. This has allowed EIGE to assess the different ways EU countries measure femicide and provide recommendations on how to drive improvements.
A statement from the EIGE says, “A common EU-wide definition of femicide would help EU Member States identify these gender-based killings, which currently vanish into female homicide statistics. Knowing the motivations and circumstances that lie behind the killing of women and girls can help EU governments better protect potential victims, as well as punish and deter perpetrators.”
In order to achieve this, the EIGE believes comparable date to properly measure femicide is required.
The statement says, “The more data we have about the killings of women and girls, the more likely it is that we will be able to correctly identify femicides. And the more EU countries collect the same type of data, the more information we have on the motivations and circumstances behind these killings.”
To raise awareness about violence against women and kick-off a ‘16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence’ campaign, important buildings around the world will be lit up in orange. Europe House in Vilnius turns orange today to mark the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women. In Brussels, the European Commission, the Council of the European Union, the European Parliament and the European External Action Service will also be lit up in orange. The theme of this year’s campaign is “Orange the World: End violence against women now!”
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