The 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence is part of a global campaign for women’s human rights. The 16 Days Campaign was initiated by the Centre for Women’s Global Leadership, Rutgers University, New Jersey.
The 16 Days of Activism begins on November 25th which has been declared an International Day Against Violence Against Women. This day was chosen to commemorate the death of the three Mirabel sisters who were detained, tortured and assassinated in 1960 during the dictatorship of Trujillo in the Dominican Republic. Today, November 25th is internationally recognised as a day of protest against violence against women.
The period also includes:
- 1st December World AIDS Day
- 3rd December International Day of the Disabled
- 6th December Montreal Massacre Anniversary
- 10th December World Human Rights Day
6th December commemorates the deaths of 14 young female engineering students who were shot dead at Montreal University in Canada in 1989.
The gunman opened fire in two classrooms and the cafeteria after ordering 48 men in the room to leave. Before opening fire, the gunman shouted “ You’re all a bunch of feminists, and I hate feminists!”
This action played a vital role at the 1993 Vienna World Conference on Human Rights in recognising violence against women as a human rights violation. The Conference drafted a Declaration to this effect and appointed the Special Rapporteur on violence against women.
In Fiji, the Fiji Women’s Crisis Centre has organised around the 16 Days of Activism since 1991 and initiated this action in other countries around the Pacific. The activities have included media campaigns, public debates, marches, exhibitions, posters, calendars, workshops and seminars on the issue of violence against women and children. Each year the campaign has grown from strength to strength and is now an anticipated event in Fiji and other Pacific countries.
” 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence Campaign”