Womens Justice Center




















News Round-up ~ Resumen de noticias


 

 

   Es su obligación garantizar igualdad: Alda Facio
México ha sido incapaz de eliminar discriminación de género

Alda Facio, jurista feminista y experta en temas de género, sostuvo que en México no hay igualdad porque desde el Estado no se han erradicado todas las formas de discriminación contra las mujeres.

De acuerdo con la especialista, no basta con declarar la igualdad entre los sexos en la legislación sino que es indispensable que se eliminen todas las formas de discriminación contra las mujeres a través de la acción de Estado.

Esa argumentación también es la premisa de su nuevo libro “La responsabilidad estatal frente al Derecho Humano a la igualdad”, presentado hoy en la Comisión de Derechos Humanos del Distrito Federal (CDHDF).

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Excerpt: The reality is the criminal justice system often decides against prosecuting cases of acquaintance rape and date rape. Once a case reaches prosecutors, there's no guarantee of a conviction, let alone a trial or full prosecution. An analysis of the National Violence Against Women Survey by the group End Violence Against Women International concluded that roughly 5 percent of rapes are ever prosecuted. (The analysis sought to account for the underreporting of sexual assault, which resulted in numbers lower than the DOJ's estimates.)

Conviction rates present a "perverse incentive" for prosecutors to pursue only the strongest cases that offer the highest probability that a DA can win the case, said the study's authors, Kimberly A. Lonsway and Joanne Archambault.

"A lot of the early civil rights cases, they weren't pursued because they weren't going to win," said Lonsway, research director at End Violence Against Women International, who frequently trains law enforcement on sexual assault investigations. "We have to take the hard ones to make change."

SEE ARTICLE

SEE ALSO: California Proposed Legislation: AB 1433 (Campus Assault Reporting w/Dignity) Requires any report of a Part 1 violent crime (willful homicide, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault), sexual assault or hate crime received by a college campus law enforcement agency to be immediately disclosed to the appropriate police or sheriff’s department.  If the victim of the crime does not wish to involve local law enforcement, they may opt to have their name redacted from the report.

AND - Open Letter Re: District Attorney Obligations and Accountability to Victims of Violence  Against Women

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New photos released by Rep. Henry Cuellar's (D-Texas) office depict the unsanitary and cramped living conditions that undocumented immigrants, many of whom are unaccompanied children, are experiencing in a detention center near the U.S.-Mexico border.

The photos were first published by the Houston Chronicle. Cuellar’s office declined Monday to tell Business Insider who took the photos and where exactly they were taken.

President Barack Obama has previously called the buildup of unaccompanied minors at temporary border facilities an "urgent humanitarian situation," and the government has directed considerable resources to housing and caring for the children. Customs and Border Protection, which is part of the Department of Homeland Security, is supposed to turn over minors to the Department of Health and Human Services within three days, but many children are remaining in detention facilities for longer periods due to the massive influx.  

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The village of rape survivor Angeline Mwarusena continues to be threatened by militia. Credit: Einberger/argum/EED/IPS

The village of rape survivor Angeline Mwarusena continues to be threatened by militia. Credit: Einberger/argum/EED/IPS

UNITED NATIONS, Jun 12 2014 (IPS) - When sexual violence – whether against men, women or children – takes place in United Nations peacekeeping missions worldwide, the world body has been quick to single out the perpetrators and expel them back to their home countries.

But the U.N. has little or no authority to prosecute offenders, mete out justice or ensure adequate compensation to victims.

The 193 member states, which provide thousands of troops for peacekeeping missions largely in Asia, Africa, and Latin America and the Caribbean, are beyond the reach of the long arm of the law.

But at a summit meeting in London this week, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon released a set of guidelines titled ‘Reparations for Conflict-Related Sexual Violence.’

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A UNIFIED NATIONAL VOICE

The IPV Prevention Council represents a unified national effort committed to

enhancing the capacity of state/territory domestic violence coalitions and

community-based domestic violence programs to advance a comprehensive

national prevention agenda and broaden support for its full implementation

at the national, state, territory and local levels.

 

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by Hope Wabuke aslan and mommy at the beach edited

This past February, when President Obama announced his first initiative to address the historical and current effects of racism in the United States, many applauded the effort as a long overdue step in the right direction. However, the program, called My Brother’s Keeper, focuses only on boys and young men of color, ignoring one half of the population.

Said the president,

By focusing on the critical challenges, risk factors and opportunities for boys and young men of color at key life stages, we can improve their long-term outcomes and ability to contribute to the nation’s competitiveness, economic mobility and growth, and civil society. Unlocking their full potential will benefit not only them, but all Americans.

While the drive to benefit the lives of young men of color is wonderful, one wonders why women are again left out of the equation. The advancement of women of color is equally as important as the advancement of young men of color, and must be addressed. This is the main point of an informal coalition of 200 concerned Black men that has formed to forward the interests of their sisters of color. They have begun by writing an open letter to the President.

We always say that gender equality will only fully exist when that other 50 percent of the population—men—become feminists. And so, this moment, when these Black men are stepping up to be feminists and support women’s rights in a way that has never before been seen in the civil rights struggle, is groundbreaking.

Among these 200 Black men are actor/producer Danny Glover, filmmaker Byron Hurt, writer/professor at Vassar Kiese Laymon and 197 other Black men from all walks of life and professions. They share the concern that a mission that Black women will not be left out of the civil rights agenda as has happened in a multitude of social justice initiatives not just in the United States, but around the globe. Ms. sat down with Laymon, one of the key organizers of the coalition, to learn more.

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We recently launched a training module and hosted a webinar to provide guidance on how to successfully investigate sexual assaults against people with disabilities. Yet these are only two of the many resources now available in this area, all of which are offered free of charge:
  • Our newest module in the OnLine Training Institute (OLTI) module is entitled, Successfully Investigating Sexual Assault Against Victims with Disabilities.This free module offers 18 hours of continuing education units for those who are eligible.
  • You can also listen to the archived version of the webinar and obtain a copy of the slides in our webinar archive. A detailed course descriptionprovides more information about the content and speakers for this webinar.
  • Slides from the webinar are available in two formats:1 slide per page for increased visibility or 3 slides per page with room for notes. The webinar transcriptis also available. 

In addition, we compiled responses to the chat questions submitted during the webinar. Participants asked excellent questions about how to determine when people are able to provide informed consent to sexual acts - and when they lack this capacity due to severe cognitive disabilities, mental illness, or incapacitation from drug or alcohol use.

 

Questions addressed the following critical issues:

 

  • Do individuals with severe cognitive disabilities fit in the legal category of those unable to give consent?
  • Can consent be implied for nonverbal individuals? If so, how?
  • What is the legal definition of a caregiver and a dependent adult?
 
These questions are posted in the FAQ's on our website. Responses are provided under the new tabs for Consent and Victims with Disabilities.

 

 
 

 

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By Shawna Wakefield, Senior Gender Justice Lead at Oxfam

“The mission of the [World] Bank depends on moving towards gender equality’
- Jim Kim, Head of the World Bank, launch of Voice and Agency, Washington DC

Recently, the World Bank launched a major new report, Voice and Agency: empowering women and girls for shared prosperity with much fanfare.  Starting with the World Development Report in 2012, the World Bank has used the strength of its data machine to deliver high profile gender research. The Bank may also be taking gender more seriously in their work: including through the 17th replenishment of its lending arm, the IDA, as a cross-cutting solution area in the new structure of the World Bank Group and as a new ‘frontier’ area on violence against women.

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 LA PROCURADORA GENERAL BONAERENSE ORDENO LA ACTUACION DE FISCALES EN LOS CASOS DE AGRESIONES A MUJERES

Hasta ahora, muchas denuncias por amenazas o lesiones leves se archivaban porque se minimizaba el riesgo. 

El protocolo busca no diluir el esfuerzo de investigación, concentrar las denuncias y vincular los casos entre los fueros penales y el de Familia. Se partió de una nota publicada en Página/12. 

 
 
 
 
 
 

 Por Mariana Carbajal

La procuradora general bonaerense, María del Carmen Falbo, dictó un protocolo de actuación para todos los fiscales de la provincia en casos de violencia de género, que busca mejorar la persecución del agresor y la protección de la víctima. Hasta ahora, muchas denuncias por amenazas o lesiones leves se archivaban en el fuero penal sin investigación, porque se minimizaba el riesgo, y en otros casos, cuando una mujer realizaba sucesivas denuncias contra su esposo o ex pareja, se abrían diversas causas que quedaban dispersas en distintas fiscalías, como si se tratara de hechos aislados, sin visualizar el contexto de violencia de género en el que sucedían los hechos. Tampoco existía articulación entre los fueros penales y de Familia, que es el que dispone las medidas cautelares de exclusión del hogar o prohibición de acercamiento. Con la resolución 346/14, Falbo apunta a revertir esa situación, que dejaba muy desprotegidas a las víctimas. Además, la procuradora ordenó a los fiscales generales crear en cada departamento judicial fiscalías especializadas. Un caso testigo, publicado en marzo por Página/12, fue el puntapié para fijar las nuevas pautas para los fiscales.

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August 20th, 2014 to Sept. 17th, 2014

ABOUT THE COURSE: This course will provide a thorough discussion on domestic and global human trafficking from both a social work perspective and a general knowledge based lens. Students will be provided an opportunity to follow the general knowledge track as well as a social work track which will add additional materials focusing on human trafficking from the perspective and expectations of the social work professional. 
 
Students who choose to focus on this course from a general knowledge point of view will be provided with a hefty dose of materials on human trafficking from a non-social work perspective.  As a whole, students will become familiar with the forms, severity, and extent of various forms of trafficking that exist around the globe. Push and pull factors involved in trafficking as they relate to the major legal, political, social and economic factors that contribute to human trafficking will be discussed. Laws, anti-trafficking policies and rescue and restore programs on human trafficking will be highlighted.
 
An exploration of the characteristics and special needs of victims (adults and children), their life experiences, and their trafficking trajectories will be discussed. 

Last, students will acquire introductory knowledge of the role of world citizens, politicians, law enforcement, the judicial systems, social workers, non-governmental organizations (NGO’s), and others in the resolution of human trafficking from a social work and a non-social work social justice perspective.

INSTRUCTOR:

Jacquelyn Meshelemiah, The Ohio State University

Course Syllabus and Sign UP and More Info

Week One: Introduction to Human Trafficking
Week Two: Laws and Policies
Week Three: The Impact on the Victim
Week Four: Interventions - From Victim to Survivor
s
 

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Developed over the last seven years in collaboration with 11 victim service
organizations, the Vera Institute of Justice's Trafficking Victim
Identification Tool has been tested with a diverse sample of potential
victims of trafficking and found reliable in predicting labor and sex
trafficking. The tool is divided into a long and short version, both
statistically reliable.

Vera has also developed a guide to provide users with recommendations on
how to build trust with potential victims, maintain confidentiality, and
use the tool correctly. When properly used, the tool could give victim
service providers, law enforcement and legal, healthcare, and social
service providers with a standard means of identifying victims of human
trafficking.

Read the full report and download the tool here
.

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As colleges go corporate, strategies for dealing with sexual violence focus on risk management, not justice

Avoid mistakes: Congressional investigations bring collateral risks, such as litigation or regulatory risks, public relations risks and reputational harm. Remember: What will play well on TV?

That’s the advice that a top education lobby group presented to colleges and universities on how to respond to a survey that Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., distributed in April to assess schools’ handling of sexual violence on their campuses. McCaskill, who championed reform of the military’s response to sexual assaults in its ranks, is now tackling campus rape. In addition to the survey, which went out to 350 schools, she has held two congressional round tables to take stock of campus policies. She is expected to introduce legislation on the issue later this month.

The American Council on Education’s (ACE) presentation — which was obtained by McCaskill’s office last week and “troubled” her “extremely” — doles out advice on how to deal with the survey but fails to mention either sexual assault victims’ needs or possible solutions. It exemplifies everything that’s wrong with schools’ responses to one of today’s most significant safety and civil rights challenges.

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SEE ALSO: WJC Recommendation to the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault

 

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The North America MenEngage Network (NAMEN) is a newly formed regional network of organizations and individuals working with men and boys to achieve gender equality, end violence, and promote health for men, women and children in North America. NAMEN is not a formally registered organization, but rather a network of members with a steering committee drawn from the general membership responsible for decision-making, communications, and the management of collective activities.  
 
 
NAMEN is the North American regional member of the Global MenEngage Alliance and has a seat on the Global Executive and Steering Committees.  MenEngage is a global alliance of NGOs and UN agencies that seeks to engage boys and men to achieve gender equality. At the national level, members include more than 400 NGOs from Sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, North America, Asia and Europe. The Alliance came together in 2004 with the general goal of working in partnership to promote the engagement of men and boys in achieving gender equality, promoting health and reducing violence at the global level, including questioning the structural barriers to achieving gender equality.

MORE INFO

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In a pole barn in Franklin, sharing space with a motorcycle and a boat, sat an imposing military vehicle designed for battlefields in Iraq or Afghanistan, not the streets of Johnson County.

It is an MRAP — a bulletproof, 55,000-pound, six-wheeled behemoth with heavy armor, a gunner's turret and the word "SHERIFF" emblazoned on its flank — a vehicle whose acronym stands for "mine resistant ambush protected."

"We don't have a lot of mines in Johnson County," confessed Sheriff Doug Cox, who acquired the vehicle. "My job is to make sure my employees go home safe."

Johnson County is one of eight Indiana law enforcement agencies to acquire MRAPs from military surplus since 2010, according to public records obtained by The Indianapolis Star. The vehicles are among a broad array of 4,400 items — everything from coats to computers to high-powered rifles — acquired by police and sheriff's departments across the state.

Law enforcement officials, especially those from agencies with small budgets, say they're turning to military surplus equipment to take advantage of bargains and protect police officers. The MRAP has an added benefit, said Pulaski County Sheriff Michael Gayer, whose department also acquired one: "It's a lot more intimidating than a Dodge."

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SEE ALSO: War Gear Flows to Police Departments

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Title: 

Understanding Influence Across Justice Agencies: The Spread of "Community Reforms" from Law Enforcement to Prosecutor Organizations

FULL TEXT PDF FREE ONLINE HERE

  
Annotation: 

Using data from the 2001 and 2005 waves of the National Prosecutors Survey and the 2000 and 2003 waves of the Law Enforcement Management and Administrative Statistics survey, this study examined whether the innovations of community prosecution and community policing interacted with and supported one another.

Abstract: 

The two innovations of community policing and community prosecution are similar in their core characteristics: greater agency responsiveness to citizen input, a focus on problem-solving that uses an expanded range of options, broader measures of success, and collaborative partnerships with other public and private community organizations. Recognizing that most research has focused on one or the other community-oriented innovations in prosecutor offices and police agencies, the current study examined the interaction of these community-oriented innovations.

The study found very little congruence between police and prosecutors in the adoption of community-oriented reforms. In jurisdictions where police agencies embraced community policing, prosecutors differentially implemented community prosecution. Each of these criminal justice enterprises apparently operates in its own institutional environment, responding to different organizational stimuli and leaders with varying goals, skills, orientation, and motivation.

One key finding of the study, which addressed factors operative in the development of community prosecution, is that community prosecution can be measured by using a model derived from National Prosecutors Survey data. The model includes five elements: using the community to identify crime problems, assigning prosecutors to geographic areas, using tools other than criminal prosecution, establishing relationships with other parties, and holding regular meetings with constituent groups. Another key finding is that four variables emerged as predictors in more than two models: organizational size, functional differentiation, formalization, and prosecutors’ tenure. These factors are examined in terms of their facilitation or subversion of community prosecution. 10 tables, 10 figures, approximately 100 references, and appended supplementary detail of the study

FULL TEXT PDF FREE ONLINE HERE

 

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Farzana Perveen’s murder was not the first time men played the game
of honour on a woman’s body. In societies like Pakistan, India,
Afghanistan and much of the Middle East and Africa, this is
an everyday reality women have to live with. According to a
2000 UN report, around 5000 women are killed every year
around the world. There exists no UN research after
that. In 2012-13, the global figure estimated by independent
organizations was 20,000 killings per year. In Pakistan, HRCP
reported the number of killings in 2012 at 949 and in 2013, at 869.

Just to freshen up the memory, two women were shot dead a few
months ago in Sindh for ‘bringing shame’ to their families by choosing
their husbands. Earlier, four women were killed in Qila Saifullah for
similar reasons. Three girls from Kohistan were killed because their
images were seen in a video wherein they were singing in the
presumed presence of boys who were also reportedly killed later
. A couple was shot dead in Kashmir on the suspicion of ‘illicit relations’.
A famous actor in Lahore was beaten, humiliated and her eyebrows
shaved on suspicion of infidelity.
 

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Statement by the Minister of Justice Regarding Legislation in Response
to the Supreme Court of Canada Ruling in Attorney General of
Canada v. Bedford et al
 
June 4, 2014 - Ottawa, ON - Department of Justice Canada
 
Today, the Honourable Peter MacKay, P.C., Q.C., M.P. for
Central Nova, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of
Canada, issued the following statement:
 
"Our Government remains committed to keeping our streets
and communities safe by cracking down on those who fuel
demand for prostitution. Today, our Government is responding
to the Supreme Court of Canada's ruling in Canada v. Bedford
to ensure that Canada's laws and the criminal justice system
continue to address the significant harms that flow from prostitution
to those engaged in prostitution and to other vulnerable persons,
while protecting Canadian communities.
 
"The Protection of Communities and Exploited Persons Act is a
"made-in-Canada" model, which directly targets the demand for
this dangerous activity. The Act would introduce tough action to
crack down on pimps and johns. For the first time, the purchase
of sexual services would be criminalized, with tough penalties for
those who exploit others through prostitution. The proposed legislation
would also protect and safeguard our communities-in particular women,
children, and those who are at risk of being drawn into
prostitution-from the dangers associated with prostitution, including
violence, drug-related crime, and organized crime.
 
"This model involves a significant overhaul of the Criminal Code's
treatment of prostitution and related activities. It would:
 
* Criminalize those who fuel the demand for prostitution,
i.e. purchasers of sexual services;
 
* Continue to criminalize those who financially benefit
from the exploitation of others through prostitution,
such as pimps, and those who procure others for
the purpose of prostitution;
 
* Prohibit advertising for the sale of
others' sexual services in print or online;
 
* Immunize those who sell their own sexual
services from criminal liability for any part
they play in the purchasing, material benefit,
procuring or advertising offences;
 
* Protect our communities by criminalizing
communicating for the purpose of selling sexual
services in public places where a child could reasonably
be expected to be present; and
 
* Increase existing penalties relating to child prostitution.
 
 

 

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Las personas investigadoras han detectado a 10.862 víctimas potenciales de estas redes dedicadas a la explotación sexual

Madrid, 03 jun. 14. AmecoPress. En este primer año de vigencia del Plan contra la trata, puesto en marcha en abril de 2013, la Policía Nacional ha liberado a 354 mujeres (29 de ellas menores). En total, las personas investigadoras de la Unidad Central contra las Redes de Inmigración y Falsedades Documentales (Ucrif) han detectado a 10.862 víctimas potenciales de estas redes dedicadas a la explotación sexual.

JPG - 42.7 KB

El balance de este primer año del plan se hizo público después de una reunión del director general de la Policía, Ignacio Cosidó, con representantes de organismos e instituciones públicas y de distintas ONG de ayuda y asistencia a las víctimas.

Entre los integrantes de estas organizaciones detenidos en el último año destacan 252 españoles, 207 rumanos, 115 chinos y 104 nigerianos, miembros de redes de las que la Policía ha salvado a 354 mujeres, de las que 300 han sido asistidas por ONGs e instituciones y casi 200 propuestas como testigos protegidas.

Con la puesta en marcha de este Plan, la Policía Nacional mantiene activos dos canales para posibilitar tanto la colaboración ciudadana como la denuncia de las víctimas. En total, las y los investigadores han recibido en este primer año 1.419 comunicaciones a través de estas vías: 787 llamadas al teléfono gratuito 900.10.50.90 -atendido las 24 horas por policías especialistas de la Brigada Central contra la Trata de Seres Humanos- y 632 correos a la dirección trata@policia.es. Gracias a esas informaciones facilitadas en las llamadas y correos recibidos, los agentes han iniciado 165 investigaciones, 16 de ellas ya han concluido con la detención de 37 personas y la liberación de 32 víctimas..

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VEA TAMBIEN: Sí, ¿pero qué podemos hacer? 13 proyectos activistas para grupos pequeños dirigidos a erradicar el tráfico sexual en su ciudad

 

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PARA ESCUCHAR EN VIVO APRIETE AQUÍ
A partir del martes 3 hasta al jueves 5 el horario de transmisión será de 9:00am a 6:30pm

Programa: http://www.gefedi.una.ac.cr/index.php/programa1

GEFEDI

 

San José será la sede del II Congreso Internacional Géneros, Feminismos y Diversidades, que se realizará entre el 2 y 5 de junio. Con el fin de hacer posible que mayor número de mujeres y audiencias puedan conocer los análisis e ideas que aquí serán discutidas, RIF estará haciendo la transmisión en vivo a partir del lunes 2 y hasta el 5 de junio.

Los temas principales que serán abordados por las y los ponentes son

  •          Violencia de género y crimen organizado
  •          Sexualidades plurales y derechos humanos
  •          Aportes para repensar las religiones y la democracia
  •          Géneros y desarrollo en tiempos de tiempo de crisis
  •          Feminismos descoloniales: deconstruyendo los saberes
  •          Tecnología, sociedad y géneros
  • AUDIOS AQUI
  •  

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By Caroline Norma

The male orgasm is unimaginably trivial in comparison to the human rights devastation that prostitution inflicts on whole swathes of the globe's female population, writes Caroline Norma.

Amnesty International ran a Stop Violence Against Women campaign between 2004 and 2010 to hold governments to account "for their failure to protect women" and urge them "to live up to their duty to stop this violence".

The organisation during this time lobbied hard for governments around the world to take a strong stand on issues like domestic violence, child marriage, reproductive rights, sexual violence in war, and the history of the Japanese military 'comfort women'.

During the same period, though, Amnesty's international secretariat was lobbied internally by some of its own branches to take a stand on issues of 'men's rights'. In particular, some of its UK members wanted the organisation to stand up for men's right to buy women for prostitution.

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Reforma del Código de Justicia Militar en México: una victoria para las Defensoras de Derechos Humanos

Foto: tlachinollan.org

 

 

 El 30 de abril la Cámara de Diputados aprobó de manera unánime reformas al Código de Justicia Militar, y una de ellas restringe la jurisdicción militar en los casos donde las víctimas sean civiles. AWID conversó con Cristina Hardaga, de  JASS (Asociadas por lo Justo) [1], sobre la importancia de esta reforma para las Defensoras de derechos Humanos.

Por Gabby De Cicco

La reforma del Código de Justicia Militar (CJM) ha sido una demanda histórica impulsada por las víctimas de abusos castrenses, organizaciones de la sociedad civil y los mecanismos internacionales de protección a los derechos humanos. De hecho la Corte Interamericana de Derechos Humanos (CoIDH) ordenó al Estado mexicano que se reforme el Código en cuatro sentencias vinculatorias, relacionadas con casos donde se comprobó que el fuero militar había extendido su jurisdicción sobre víctimas civiles, afectando el acceso a la justicia. Incluso la Suprema Corte de Justicia de México declaró inconstitucional el artículo 57 del Código de Justicia Militar por hacer del fuero castrense un privilegio personal[2]

AWID: ¿Por qué la aprobación de las reformas al Código de Justicia Militar es tan relevante para las Defensoras de Derechos Humanos?

Cristina Hardaga (CH): La reforma forma parte de una de serie de acciones que buscan poner fin al encubrimiento y violencia castrense, y para las Defensoras, este es su triunfotambién frente al Ejército. Fueron ellas con sus demandas y denuncias al ser víctimas directas de violaciones a los DD. HH. las que pusieron al descubierto las violaciones realizadas por el Ejército. Muchas de ellas enfrentaron directamente el abuso del poder y la violencia institucional castrense, vivieron como el "fuero militar" era sinónimo de encubrimiento y privilegio. Si bien sus denuncias empezaban en las instancias civiles, luego de que la Justicia Civil realizara una lectura del CJM decidía remitir las investigaciones al Fuero Militar, y en ese momento la Jurisdicción Militar asumía la competencia de los casos, de las investigaciones y era el actor gubernamental a cargo de llevar a cabo las mismas.

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BOOK REVIEW EXCERPT:

The UN is failing to protect people from grave human rights abuses. It is failing to deal with the conflicts that give rise to wide scale atrocities. But why is it failing to confront these horrors? Although the UN may protect some human rights in some situations, there are vastly more failures than successes. This book explores what is possible in law, what is possible politically, and why the UN is failing to protect human rights.

Many books by eye-witnesses, victims, child soldiers, and activists detail individual and collective suffering. I am not well-placed to tell those stories, nor are they my stories to tell. I was not there. I did not experience abuses nor bear witness to atrocities. Each story is one of unbearable anguish. But each story is a personal account that cannot go beyond its own particular conflict and context. My aim in this book is to tell a different story: the story of why the international community allows conflicts to continue and human rights to be violated. It is a story of UN inaction.

SEE FULL BOOK REVIEW

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LUCKNOW, India (AP) — Police used water cannons to disperse hundreds of women who were protesting Monday against a rise in violence against women in the northern Indian state where two teenagers were gang-raped last week and later found hanging from a tree.

The protesters in Lucknow, the capital of Uttar Pradesh state, were demonstrating outside the office of the top elected official, Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, demanding that he crack down on an increasing number of rape and other attacks on women and girls.

Hundreds of police officers, including female officers, pushed and shoved the protesters before deploying water cannons to disperse them.

The protesters also demanded that the government curb police indifference, which they said was encouraging attacks on women.

Police failed to take any action when the father of one of the girls reported to police that the two cousins were missing. Two police officers were fired for dereliction of duty after the girls were found gang-raped and killed.

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IN-DEPTH VIDEO INTERVIEW WITH INDIAN'S HUMAN RIGHTS LAWYER, VRINDA GROVER, SUPREME COURT OF INDIA

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Today, the White House released a report that was spearheaded by an interagency task force organized to advise President Obama on the My Brother’s Keeper (MBK) policy initiative.

Announcing the Initiative in February, Mr. Obama expressed hope that, “By focusing on the critical challenges, risk factors, and opportunities for boys and young men of color at key life stages, we can improve their long-term outcomes and ability to contribute to the Nation’s competitiveness, economic mobility and growth, and civil society. Unlocking their full potential will benefit not only them, but all Americans…”

But MBK lacks a gender equitable lens, which, if applied, would also illuminate the particular issues impacting girls and women of color. Significantly, girls and women are not mentioned in the report, which was introduced as ”a statement of progress” that only “scratched the surface of this complex issue and opportunity.”

For this reason, more than 200 African-American men signed an open letter to President Barack Obama calling for the inclusion of girls and young women of color in MBK. As Kiese Laymon, one of the organizers noted, “The men who came together to lift up this issue are organizers, professors, recently incarcerated, filmmakers, taxi drivers, college students, high school teachers, ministers, former pro­athletes, fathers of sons, and fathers of daughters. These men, identifying as straight, queer and transgender, all share a commitment to the expansion of My Brothers Keeper ­­ and all other national youth interventions ­­ to include an explicit focus on the structural conditions that negatively impact all youth of color.”

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SEE: LETTER OF 200 CONCERNED BLACK MEN CALLING FOR THE INCLUSION OF WOMEN AND GIRLS IN “MY BROTHERS KEEPER” 

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Una mujer cubana sostiene a su hija en brazos mientras disfrutan de un espectáculo de teatro callejero enun barrio de La habana. Crédito: Jorge Luis Baños/IPS

LA HABANA, 27 may 2014 (IPS) - En Cuba, los medios de comunicación y las autoridades repiten que la participación social de las mujeres es la causa de la baja fecundidad de este país, un argumento que tiene toda la carga de la culpa.

Cuba, que no alcanza desde 1978 el necesario reemplazo poblacional de al menos una hija por mujer, presentó en 2013 una tasa bruta de fecundidad de 1,71 descendientes por cada una, según la Oficina Nacional de Estadísticas e Información (ONEI).

La disminución de los nacimientos, la baja mortalidad y el saldo migratorio negativo en parte determinado por una crisis económica de más de 20 años, elevan la población de adultos mayores en este país del Caribe insular, con casi 11,2 millones de habitantes.

Mujeres especialistas en población y feministas reaccionaron inusualmente molestas por el tratamiento mediático de este tema, a raíz de un reportaje del 29 de abril en el Noticiero Nacional de la Televisión Cubana (NTV), que llega cada noche a las pantallas.

“Estoy harta de escuchar por los medios cubanos, en boca de periodistas, especialistas y hasta de altos dirigentes que las mujeres somos responsables de la baja fecundidad”, protestó la joven feminista Helen Hernández en un comentario que circuló ese mismo día por Internet.

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