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November 26, 2020

Helpline & 16 days of activism campaign against GBV launched

Islamabad

November 26, 2020

Islamabad : The Ministry of Human Rights (MoHR) on Wednesday launched a 16 Days of Activism Campaign against Gender Based Violence (GBV) through a series of short informational videos covering topics such as sexual harassment, rape, the marriage contract, filing an FIR and women’s inheritance.

The films have been developed in collaboration with the National Commission on the Status of Women (NCSW) and Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy (SOC) Films. The Films will be available in Urdu, Sindhi, Pushto, Punjabi and Balochi languages.

The films will be broadcast widely across social media through live watch parties that will be conducted through-out the 16 Days of Activism against Gender Based Violence starting from November 25 (International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women) to December 10 (International Human Rights Day). The films will also be disseminated to numerous universities and colleges across Pakistan, as well as amongst the civil society to increase outreach. Several engaging radio shows are also being conducted with leading lawyers and human rights experts, to generate greater awareness around these issues and stimulate discussion and dialogue at the grassroots level.

The Ministry of Human Rights is also launching the 1099 Helpline APP which has been developed in collaboration with UN Women, to streamline and strengthen grievance redressal mechanisms against human rights violations, particularly with regards to Gender Based Violence and Child Abuse. The 1099 Helpline APP is already available for download on the Google Playstore, and will be available on the apple store as well early next month. Since the helpline itself was launched in November 2018, it has received over 450,000 calls, 49 per cent of which were related to women’s rights. The APP will provide an alternate and effective mechanism to launch and track complaints related to human rights violations.

In her welcome remarks at the launch event, Federal Secretary for Human Rights, Rabiya Javeri Agha said that MoHR has placed an emphasis on strengthening grievance redressal mechanism to end violence and exploitation of women and girls in Pakistan.

“The launch of our 1099 helpline app is another important step towards strengthening these mechanisms,” she said adding that the Ministry is committed to raise awareness among women and educate them on their fundamental rights and the short films developed on topics that impact women are aimed at fulfilling this mandate.

Deputy Head of European Union Delegation, Thomas Seiler also attended the event. In his statement, he emphasized that promoting women’s rights and gender equality is essential for the European Union in its relations with other countries.

“We therefore value the cooperation with the Government of Pakistan and the efforts to promote these fundamental rights. The Huqooq-e-Pakistan project is a very good example of this cooperation. Our dialogue includes the fight against Gender Based Violence, which is a serious matter, above all in times of Covid-19. We know that countries, where women’s rights are respected, have stronger growth and are more productive and prosperous,” he said.

The HeP is a European Union (EU) funded programme with the objective of supporting the continued efforts of the Government of Pakistan for the promotion of human rights. The purpose of the program is to strengthen the institutional and policy framework at the federal and the provincial level for the promotion and protection of human rights.