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EI marks International Day for Elimination of Violence Against Women

Teachers everywhere are concerned about the enormous problem of violence against women and girls, a violation of human rights that takes place on a vast scale worldwide.

November 25 is the day set aside by the United Nations to acknowledge the problem and seek solutions. The day was chosen to honour three sisters — Minerva, Patria and Maria Teresa Mirabal — who were murdered on November 25, 1960 for their resistance to the Trujillo dictatorship in their native Dominican Republic. The World Heath Organization estimates that as many as 3 million women are killed annually in gender-based crime. Violence against women takes many forms: domestic abuse, sexual harassment, stalking, rape, incest, prostitution, trafficking in women and children, an array of “traditional” practices including infanticide, female genital mutilation, honour-killing and dowry deaths, as well as violations of sexual and reproductive rights such as forced pregnancy or abortion, and involuntary sterilization. For more than a decade EI has had policy condemning violence against women and urging member organizations to work towards positive change in education systems so that all girls and boys can learn in an environment free of violence and gender stereotyping. “Significant progress has been made in raising awareness of the scale of the problem, but much more remains to be done,” said EI Deputy General Secretary Janice Eastman. “Teachers and their unions are committed to facing this challenge, and doing all we can to help bring an end to the devastating scourge of violence against women and girls.” For more information, please go to: www.unifem.org/campaigns/november25/

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