Friday, June 21, 2013

Violence Against Women - World Health Organization Report

Violence against women has reached ‘epidemic proportions,’ WHO reports says
Women violated by their partners are twice as likely to face depression as women who have not experienced violence.      National Monitor, Fritzi R. Bodenheimer | June 21, 2013
A new report released today by the World Health Organization (WHO) says violence against women has reached “epidemic proportions.”  More than one-third of women around the world will experience violence resulting in physical and mental harm.
The violence against women is most likely to come from an intimate partner.  It may include physical violence like hitting, kicking or beating; sexual coercion; emotional abuse like insults, humiliation, or threats of harm; or controlling behaviors like restricting access to a woman’s family, job, or medical care.
“The report findings show that violence greatly increases women’s vulnerability to range of short-and long-term health problems; it highlights the need for the health sector to take violence against women more seriously,” said Dr. Claudia Garcia-Moreno, one of the authors of the report.
Women violated by their partners are twice as likely to face depression as women who have not experienced violence.
They are also more likely to contract HIV and sexual transmitted diseases and to experience unwanted pregnancies.
The study found that among women who are murdered, 38 percent were murdered by their intimate partner.  Forty-two percent of women who have been sexually or physically violated sustain injuries.
While violence is a global problem, women in southeast Asia, eastern Mediterranean countries and Africa had the highest incidences.  Still, the report shows 32 percent of violence against women occurs in high-income countries.  In the United States, about 5 million women are victims of domestic violence, according to the Department of Health and Human Services.
“This new data shows that violence against women is extremely common.  We urgently need to invest in prevention to address the underlying causes of this global women’s health problem,” said Professor Charlotte Watts from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.  The school was a partner to WHO in the research, along with the South African Medical Research Council.  The researchers looked at data from 81 countries.
Among the minimum standards WHO recommends to health care centers is training for providers in how to ask their patients about violence, a guarantee of confidentiality and a private setting for consultation, and the resources to treat the physical and mental health of the patient.
In an interview with Voice of America, Garcia-Moreno of WHO, said we need to prevent violence from happening in the first place.  “We know that children who are abused or who are exposed to their parents abusing each other are more likely to end up in an abusive relationship either as perpetrator or as victim,” she said.                               
If you need help, call 1-800-799-SAFE (7233).
Please use your voice to speak out against this outrage.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013



Compiled by

Kathleen Hoy Foley

Writing is dangerous because we are afraid of what the writing reveals: the fears, the angers, the strengths of a woman under a triple or quadruple oppression.  Yet in that very act lies our survival because a woman who writes has power.  And a woman with power is feared.

~~Gloria Anzaldua
We begin to find our voices.  We begin to see, hear…”I am talking about 5 thousand years of slavery—my slavery, my mother’s, her mother’s—all the women in the world for generations and generations.”  Nobody knows what to do, and yet we are doing it.  Millions of obscure women begin to dare to speak.  Our pens are dangerous weapons. 

~~Kady Vandeurs
In the transformation of silence into language and action, it is vitally necessary for each one of us to establish or examine her function in that transformation, and to recognize her role as vital.

~~Audre Lorde
It is not simply that the voices of working-class people and people of color have been stifled; they also have been unheard and rendered unhearable, aurally erased.  And the dominant group, too, has been damaged in the process, deprived of access to crucial experience and ways of seeing…

~~Toni Morrison
In addition to taboos against speaking and publishing what is regarded as unspeakable, the writer faces her audience’s resistance to hearing…  (the) work calls into question our ways of keeping at arm’s length what makes us uncomfortable.  At its most powerful, (the) work often impels us to in-corporate the pain of violation, to take it into our own bodies where it can force us to respond.  It implicates us…in the struggle to give voice to the horror and the determination to end it.

~~Deirdre Lashgari 

Whatever might exist that is completely outside of human language, that is completely other, can paradoxically be approached or approximated only through language.

~~Jane Hoogestraat

Why are so many more women silenced than men?

~~Tillie Olsen 

But woman is learning for herself that not self-sacrifice, but self-development, is her first duty in life; And this (is) not primarily for the sake of others, but that she may become fully herself.

~~Matilda Joslyn Gage

Remembering and telling the truth about terrible events are prerequisites both for the restoration of the social order and for the healing of individual victims.

~~ Dr. Judith Herman 

I had an abortion.

~~Gloria Steinman

What if I tell you, you are not different

it’s the family albums that lie

~~Andrienne Rich 

Only women die one by one, attempting until the last minute to embody an ideal imposed upon them…  Only women die one by one, smiling up to the last minute, smile of the siren, smile of the coy girl, smile of the madwoman.  Only women die one by one, polished to perfection or unkempt behind locked doors too desperately ashamed to cry out.  Only women die one by one, still believing that if only they had been perfect…they would not have come to hate life so much, to find it so strangely difficult and empty, themselves so hopelessly confused and despairing.   

~~Andrea Dworkin 

Most harm that can befall victims through violence can come to them also through deceit.  But deceit controls more subtly, for it works on belief as well as action.

~~Sissela Bok 

“She feels alone, burdened by a weight she could never shake off.  Even today, she feels a knot in her stomach as she writes, finding it hard to put words together, preferring to forget and not be consumed anymore by memories.  She feels that by speaking of her father, and above all by speaking of the half-open door he never let her shut, she has in turn opened up a dangerous gap in her tale…” 

~~Sylvia Molloy 

When incest is covert (in cases of intrusive voyeurism, sexually colored ridicule of a child, and sexually motivated exposure), it does not involve physical contact.  However, the dynamic is always sexual misuse, both of the authoritative power and of the legitimate need for closeness over a child who is unable to resist.

~~Eileen Starzecpyzel 

my poems

strung like bloody beads across my throat,

my disembowelment, my seppuku—

scarlet entrails

twisting from the open wound

~~Janice Mirikitani

Rage is not a "stage."  It is not something to be gotten over.  It is transformative, focusing Force.  It is her broom, her Fire-breathing, winged mare.  It is her spiraling staircase leading her where she can find her own Kind, unbind her mind.

~~Mary Daly

How do you break out of a restrictive cultural milieu?  How to know you are in a bubble, and life—the real life you are meant to live—is taking place elsewhere?

~~Dr. Gayle Wurtz

But she had made art!

Somehow, sick or well, every day…

It’s me

who is having trouble

making art of this.

~~Bernice Rendrick

To anybody who asks me who I think I am to tell political bigwigs, captains of industry, and religious honchos where to get off, I answer: Who do I have to be?  I am the Domestic Goddess, you impertinent creature, you!

~~Roseanne Barr

I imagined the hostile response I’d get…  “Who does she think she is?”  …it turned out not to be like that…  The world…turned out to be much, much bigger...  …full of…sisters and brothers although we had never met, who were there to welcome me coming out of the shadows, and who wanted to throw off the shadows that obscured their own lives, too.  My small voice was answered by a rich chorus of voices: my voice, which had once had been mute!  Of all the places where my story might start…it started itself at a point in my life when I could not speak at all…

~~Nuala O’Faolain

All silence has meaning.

~~Andrienne Rich