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  • Women are statistically more likely to be subjected to violence and sexual harassment during the annual carnival celebrations.

    Women are statistically more likely to be subjected to violence and sexual harassment during the annual carnival celebrations. | Photo: EFE

Published 10 February 2018

Bolivia is also boosting awareness of the Law to Guarantee Women a Life Free From Violence, which, according to the United Nations, has yet to reduce femicide.

Bolivia Without Violence is launching a "Carnival without excess, without violence" campaign aimed at reducing crime during the annual celebrations and encouraging men to treat women and girls with respect.

RELATED: 
Brazil, Trinidad and Tobago: Women Fight Abuse During Carnival

Bolivia Without Violence is made up of private, public and international organizations, including U.N. Women and local municipal governments.

Five of Bolivia's major cities are part of the campaign, which has so far distributed 10,000 leaflets; installed billboards; established an emergency hotline, and broadcast educational videos.

The campaign is also boosting awareness of the Law to Guarantee Women a Life Free From Violence, which, according to the U.N. Women Coordinator, has yet to reduce femicides.

More than 100 women are still murdered in Bolivia every year, and the number of victims is rising: last year, 111 femicides were reported and in 2016, according to the general prosecutor, 104 women were murdered.     

According to data gathered by the Bolivian Special Police Task Force Against Violence, last year's carnival was marred by 89 violent incidents; in 2016, 74 such incidents were reported.   

Spikes in violent acts against women are also observed in carnival celebrations elsewhere in the region. In Trinidad and Tobago, a new law has been passed to combat harassment by requiring consent to engage in a popular dance known as "wining." 

In Brazil, women's organizations have launched a campaign highlighting the difference between flirting and harassment. Women participating in carnival celebrations in the states of Minas Gerais, Bahia, Sao Paulo and Pernambuco now carry tattoos with the message: "No means no."


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