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UN REPORT: Violence Against Women Is Greatest In The Caribbean And Latin America … Cites ‘Outside Relationships’ As Reason

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SAN JUAN — A report launched at the regional parliament (Parlatino) with over 120 legislators by the U.N. Development Program (UNDP)-U.N. Women revealed that Latin America and the Caribbean were the most violent regions in the world for women.

“In Latin America and the Caribbean, the number of countries with national women protection policies has risen from 24 in 2013 (74 percent) to 31 in 2016 (94 percent), yet, the region is still the most violent in the world for women (WHO 2013), starting scenario of a new U.N. Development Program (UNDP)-U.N. Women report launched today at the regional parliament (Parlatino) with over 120 legislators,” a press release by the UNDP stated.

The rate of sexual violence against women outside of relationships is the highest in the world in these regions, while the second-highest for those who are or were a couple, the report stated.

The report added that even though the region has shown great progress in the “normative frameworks” that recognize violence against women as a social phenomenon, sustainable development and the protection of human rights, the problem still persists, with “high rates of violence against women remaining a dire challenge.”

“The number of female homicides (femicides/feminicides) is on the rise, with two in every five resulting from domestic violence.

Moreover, about 30 percent of women have been victims of violence by their partner and 10.7 percent have suffered sexual violence not related to an intimate partner, according to World Health Organization figures,” stated the report.

The U.N. report also noted that 24 of the 33 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean have laws against domestic violence, but only nine of them have passed legislation that tackles a range of forms of other violence against women in public or private.

The report further calls for generating social pacts among governments, the private sector and civil society to engage all relevant factors.

The report is launched as part of the “Unite to end violence against women” campaign, which brings together several United Nations agencies.

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John McCarthy

John McCarthy

John McCarthy is primarily known for his investigative reporting on the U.S. Virgin Islands. A series of reports beginning in the 1990's revealed that there was everything from coliform bacteria to Cryptosporidium in locally-bottled St. Croix drinking water, according to a then-unpublished University of the Virgin Islands sampling. Another report, following Hurricane Hugo in 1989, cited a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) confidential overview that said that over 50 percent of the U.S. Virgin Islands public lives below the poverty line. The Virgin Islands Free Press is the only Caribbean news source to regularly incorporate the findings of U.S. Freedom of Information Act requests. John's articles have appeared in the BVI Beacon, St. Croix Avis, San Juan Star and Virgin Islands Daily News. He is the former news director of WSVI-TV Channel 8 on St. Croix.

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