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UN Special Rapporteur Violence against Women

United Nations Special Rapporteur Dubravka Šimonović visited Australia from 13 to 27 February 2017 gathering first-hand information about from a wide range of stakeholders, including women survivors assessing laws, policies and services to prevent and combat gender based violence. .

White Ribbon Australia was part of a 28-strong roundtable with representatives from NGOs across the sector attending the Sydney Non-Government Organisation (NGO) Consultation with Ms Šimonović, hosted by the Australian Human Rights Commission.

The meeting was part of Ms Šimonović’s 15-day tour of Australia, which included visits to Canberra, Sydney, Hobart, Brisbane, Cherbourg, Alice Springs, Adelaide and Melbourne. Ms Šimonović’s focus discussions and review will lead to the recommendation of measures, ways and means at the national, regional and international levels, to eliminate violence against women and its causes, and to remedy its consequences.

During the session, White Ribbon highlighted to Ms Šimonović:
• the importance of positive engagement of men in addressing men’s violence against women
• the need for men to recognise and acknowledge their role in ending men’s violence against women
• the critical role of primary prevention and how this work can be supported alongside support services

White Ribbon stressed the important of men being included and positively engaged in discussions regarding prevention, response and critical research in this area.

As part of White Ribbon Australia’s advocacy work, the social movement continues to advocate for the positive, constructive role of men in addressing men’s violence against women, the need for broader support including at government level for prevention and adequate funding for critical support services for those experiencing violence and perpetrators. We enable and encourage Ambassadors to use their own spheres of influence and advocate for the prevention of violence against women, thus increasing male participation and perspective in the national conversation.

Ms. Šimonović will present a report with final findings and recommendations to the Human Rights Council in June 2017.

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