Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Welfare in collaboration with civil society organisations will on Friday this week roll out a joint campaign under the banner ‘Ndiulula’ to break the silence on Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) in the world of work.
The Ministry’s Public Relations Officer, Lucy Bandazi, said Ndiulula (I Won’t be silent) campaign is premised on the background of increasing levels of violence and harassment in the world of work which she said remains one of the most tolerated violations of workers’ human rights.
In Malawi, the 2015 Demographic Health Survey highlights that 41 per cent of women aged 15-49 experience either physical or sexual violence. On the other hand, 96 per cent of GBV incidences are perpetrated by men.
The 2013 report on sexual harassment in the workplace in Malawi further indicates that lack of knowledge among women, fear of career loss and lack of reporting or grievance handling mechanisms are some of the reasons behind non-reporting of GBV incidences in the world of work.
Bandazi said such cases of violence drain resources and handicaps people as economic agents from effectively participating and contributing to socio-economic development processes.
She said the campaign, which is a long term project, therefore works towards building individual and collective voices of women, girls and their different allies to break the longstanding culture of fear, silence and normalization of violence, especially sexual harassment in the world of work in order to bring it on the spotlight.
“The campaign will empower women and girls to take action to challenge and reject violence in the world of work. It will also create awareness on existing services and legislation to address violence against women and girls in the world of work.
“This will enable Malawi achieve an equitable and conducive world of work in which violence against women and girls is not tolerated and accepted,” she said.