End Violence Against Women - MPs What Are You Doing To Ratify #IstanbulConvention?

12/14/2016 07:36 am ET Updated Dec 14, 2016

The Istanbul Convention radically changes the complacency of governments in tackling violence against women and girls. Also known as the Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women, it lays down an all-inclusive legal framework that will have a far-reaching impact in preventing violence against women; protecting women from violence as well as prosecuting those who commit the crime.

<a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.coe.int/en/web/istanbul-convention/home" target="_blank">Istanbul Convention</a>
Council of Europe
Istanbul Convention

Join the IC Change campaign - a UK movement to bring about ratification of the Istanbul Convention in the UK.

Article 3 (a) of the Istanbul Convention defines violence against women as ‘a violation of human rights and a form of discrimination against women and shall mean all acts of gender-based violence that result in, or are likely to result in, physical, sexual, psychological or economic harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or in private life’. The Istanbul Convention sets in motion legal parameters that will comprehensively and effectively monitor, prevent and protect women from acts of violence. Women include girls under the age of 18 - Article 3(f). Read the treaty here.

The United Kingdom MUST ratify the Istanbul Convention. On Friday 16th December 2016, the Preventing and Combating Violence Against Women and Domestic Violence (Ratification of Convention) Bill 2016-17 will have its Second Reading. MPs must support this Bill and represent the will of the people in voting into place the standards set by the Istanbul Convention to ensure there is sufficient monitoring of and protection against violence to women. This is not a request but a DEMAND for a national commitment to increase women’s safety in the UK. Action speaks louder than words so I urge you to call out your respective MPs to lead the country into a new era where women and young girls are better protected.

Why the noise about the ratification when the UK signed the convention in 2012? An intention to comply is not a legal commitment to do so. By signing, all the UK successfully did was nod its head in agreement that the convention is a good idea and gradually introduce changes to law to comply with the convention such as laws on psychological violence (Coercive Control) and Female Genital Mutilation (FGM). However this is not enough - we need the UK Govt to make this is a Priority. Making it law will do so. We need more in place to legally secure the safety of women and girls. This can be achieved through ratification which is effectively a national legal commitment that transfers intention into action. Countries that have ratified the convention include Austria, France, Germany, Portugal and Spain. It beggars belief that the UK is dragging its feet on this pivotal issue four years after signing up to it.

At least 100 MPs need to show up in Parliament on Friday 16th December to support the Bill - use this tool to send tweets to UK Members of Parliament.

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