In 2012, the Committee on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women considered Kell v. Canada (CEDAW/C/51/D/19/2008). In 1990, William Senych applied for housing without the knowledge of his common law partner, Cecilia Kell, an Aboriginal woman from the Rae-Edzo community in the Northwest Territories (NWT) of Canada. Senych’s application was denied because he was not a member of the Rae-Edzo community for which the housing was earmarked. On the advice of a Tenant Relations officer at the Rae-Edzo Housing Authority, Kell then applied for housing, listing Senych as her spouse. In 1991, the NWT Housing Corporation issued an Agreement for Purchase and Sale to Kell and Senych as co-owners of the property. Senych subjected Kell to domestic violence, including economic abuse, over the subsequent three-year period. In 1993, following a request from Senych and without Kell’s knowledge, the NWT Housing Corporation (on instruction from the Rae-Edzo Housing Authority) removed Kell’s name from the Assignment of Lease, the document that certified co-ownership. The removal had the effect of making Senych the sole owner of the property. Senych was a board member of the Housing Authority at the time of his request
In 1995, Senych changed the locks and denied Kell access to the property. He subsequently sought to evict her while she sought protection in a shelter Kell filed proceedings against Senych in the NWT Supreme Court seeking compensation for assault, battery, sexual assault, intimidation, trespass to chattels, loss of use of her home and consequential payment of rent and attendant expenses. She also filed a declaration that Senych had obtained the property fraudulently, aided and abetted by the NWT Government. Kell was assigned a legal aid lawyer, who advised her to comply with the letter of eviction and did not challenge the letter’s validity. Shortly thereafter, Senych was diagnosed with cancer at which time Kell’s lawyer advised her to delay proceedings. Senych later died, following which Kell’s lawyer initiated proceedings against his estate, the NWT Housing Corporation and another. A replacement legal aid lawyer added a claim for damages for assault and intimidation. In 1999, Senych’s estate and the Housing Corporation offered Kell a monetary settlement. During negotiations, Kell’s case was twice reassigned to new lawyers. Both insisted that Kell settle. She refused, however, as her key concern was regaining the property. Following her refusal, Kell’s lawyer ceased acting on her behalf. Kell’s case was only re-assigned to a new lawyer after she appealed to the Legal Services Board. The Supreme Court dismissed both proceedings for “want of prosecution”. Costs were imposed against Kell and subsequent appeals were unsuccessful. In 2004, Kell filed a third action related to her interest in and right to the leasehold title and possession of the property. The property had then been sold and the Court dismissed the matter.
Kell subsequently submitted a communication to the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women in which she claimed that Canada had violated articles 1, 2(d), 2(e), 14(2)(h), 15(1)-15(4), 16(1)(h) of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women. Kell claimed that Canada had allowed its agents – the NWT Housing Corporation and the Rae-Edzo Housing Authority – to discriminate against her on the grounds of sex, marital status and cultural heritage and had failed to ensure that its agents provide equal treatment to female housing applicants. Kell noted, in particular, Canada’s failure to prevent and remedy the fraudulent removal of her name from the Assignment of Lease and the failure to ensure that its agents afford women and men equal rights in respect of ownership, acquisition, management, administration and enjoyment of property.DV, sexual abuse
M.P.M., a Mexican national, sought asylum in Canada in 2006. M.P.M. claimed that she was entitled to asylum because she is a victim/survivor of domestic violence and was seeking to escape her abusive ex-husband, a Mexican police officer.
Canadian authorities dismissed M.P.M.’s claim on the basis that she had failed to establish that she was a refugee, within the meaning of the Convention relating to the Status of Refugees. Authorities concluded that M.P.M. had falsely claimed to be a victim/survivor of domestic violence in order to obtain asylum in Canada and failed to provide credible and consistent evidence to support a claim of asylum. An application for judicial review and a separate application for a pre-removal risk assessment were also dismissed. M.P.M. did not file an application to prevent her deportation on humanitarian and compassionate grounds because of the low success and cost of such applications. In addition, she believed that Canadian authorities would dismiss such an application, since it would be based on the same arguments included in her previous unsuccessful applications. M.P.M. subsequently submitted a communication to the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (Committee) in which she claimed, inter alia, that there were substantial grounds for believing that her life and safety were at real risk if deported to Mexico. M.P.M. submitted that Canada had violated articles 2(c), 2(d) and 3 of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) by discriminating against her in her asylum claim and failing to ensure equal protection of her rights. In addition, she submitted that the failure of Canadian authorities to take her vulnerable situation fully into account constituted a violation of article 15 concerning equality in legal and civil matters. M.P.M. also claimed that Canada had violated article 16 of equality in marriage and family relations, but she failed to identify the basis of that claim.
The Committee concluded that the communication was ill-founded and not sufficiently substantiated and, thus, declared it inadmissible under article 4(2)(c) of the Optional Protocol. In doing so, it noted the voluntary return of M.P.M. to Mexico, her failure to explain her return to the Committee or follow-up her communication, the absence of any reports of violence since her return to Mexico, and her failure to provide new evidence to the Committee to substantiate her claim. Having declared the communication inadmissible on this basis, the Committee declined to consider Canada’s other objections to the admissibility of the communication.
Located under "Information About the Instanbul Convention."
The Istanbul Convention codifies established standards, jurisprudence and developments at international level, as well as best practice at national level, thereby lending them more weight and ensuring their wider application. Drawing in particular on the framework of measures of the Convention on the Elimination of All forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) and case law developed by the CEDAW Committee, it is firmly based on the premise that violence against women cannot be eradicated without investing in gender equality and that in turn, only real gender equality and a change in attitudes can truly prevent such violence.
The following tables describe the manner in which the Istanbul Convention builds on the three sources that constitute the CEDAW framework: the Convention, General Recommendations and case law. The tables also show how the Istanbul Convention complements these instruments by establishing a more detailed catalogue of legally-binding obligations to prevent and respond to violence against women. The tables do not however contain a detailed explanation of the extensive list of obligations under the Istanbul Convention.
This research paper intends to analyze the impact on their society at large of democratization of women’s roles at home and at the workplace. Because it is important to know the past in order to understand the present, the status of women in the Maghreb countries in the pre-independence era will be presented. But the major part of the research will begin in the 1980s with the early autonomous feminist wave and continues until the present: the first decade of the 2000s.
Several international instruments have provided for women’s equality, but it was at the 1993 Vienna Conference that women’s rights became an integral part of human rights, highlighting the issue of violence against women. However, in spite of progress since then, in particular during the last few decades, women are still far from having reached the equality they have been striving for. Increased information being transmitted via the media, but also via the work done by female activists, together with increased education have led to sweeping social changes, creating awareness among women. As a result, women are increasingly breaking the taboos that used to keep them silent and submissive and are asking for help at the centers ready to aid them find solutions to their problems of violence.
Article located at the bottom of the page of the given link
Taken from the intro: Building upon previous Clearinghouse Review articles and several appearing in this issue, we draw a primer on the U.N. human rights system as a means of complementing domestic advocacy efforts on behalf of low-income and poor communities and individuals. First, we give an overview of the U.N. mechanisms that monitor and promote human rights compliance in the United States. Second, we cite examples of how social justice organization have engaged these mechanisms to broaden access to justice and deter violence against women, and we suggest opportunities for future engagement on a range of issues confronting clients of legal aid programs.
In 2001, Ms. Zhanna Mukhina, a Russian national currently residing and working in Italy, gave birth. The father of the child, the author’s employer, refused to admit paternity and died shortly after the child’s birth. In 2005, the author lost custody of her son ‘owing to the deterioration of her mental state and her inability to support the child.’ Subsequent appeals to regain custody of her son proved unsuccessful and, in 2009, the European Court of Human Rights declared a complaint from the author inadmissible.
In 2010, the author submitted a communication to the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women claiming, without further substantiation, that Italy had violated her rights under article 16(f) of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women to ensure women and men ‘[t]he same rights and responsibilities with regard to guardianship, wardship, trusteeship and adoption of children ….’
In 2011, the Committee on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women considered Rivera v. Canada (CEDAW/C/50/D/26/2010). In 2006, Guadalupe Herrera Rivera (GHR), a Mexican national, claimed asylum in Canada, along with her then husband and their two minor children. Canadian authorities denied the claim on the basis that it lacked credibility.
In October 2008, ‘Assistance aux femmes’, acting on behalf of GHR, filed applications with Immigration Canada for a pre-removal risk assessment (PRRA) and on humanitarian and compassionate (H&C) grounds. The H&C grounds application included information about GHR’s experiences of domestic violence, the inadequate protection in Mexico against such violence, and the risk of GHR experiencing further violence if deported to Mexico.
In September 2010, GHR submitted a communication to the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW Committee) claiming that, if Canada deported her to Mexico, it would violate her rights under articles 1, 2(a)-2(d), 5(a) and 24 of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW). GHR requested interim measures to prevent Canada from deporting her to Mexico while her communication was pending before the CEDAW Committee.
On August 10 2001, the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) issued its landmark decision on the Communication No. 17/2008. The case was filed by the organization Advocaci – Advocacia Cidada pelos Direitos Humanos and the Center for Reproductive Rights against the state of Brazil on November 30th 2007. This is the first decision establishing states’ international responsibility on preventable maternal death case within the UN Human Rights System.
The author of the complaint, VK, alleged that she had been a persistent victim of domestic abuse at the hands of her husband, and petitioned the Bulgarian courts to issue a protection order against him. VK was issued an interim order, but at the full hearing, the court refused to make a permanent order in accordance with its interpretation of national law on the basis that no domestic violence had taken place in the month prior to the initial hearing. The ruling was upheld on appeal. VK specifically alleged that the State had neglected its positive obligation under the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women to protect her from domestic violence, and that it had not acted to ensure the necessary protection to avoid irreparable damage to her and her two children.
In 2011, the Committee on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women considered V.P.P v. Bulgaria (C/53/D/31/2011). V.P.P., a minor, was sexually assaulted by B.G., an adult man who lived in a neighbouring apartment building. Bulgarian authorities waited two years before indicting B.G. for “sexual molestation of a minor”. The District Court approved a plea bargain agreement that B.G. receive a three-year suspended sentence for pleading guilty. B.G. continued to live next door to V.P.P. following the assault and no action was taken to ensure the ongoing safety of V.P.P.
The District Court rejected a request to file a civil claim for moral damages and a separate successful tort suit for 15,000 euros could not be executed with the mechanisms available under Bulgarian law.
S.V.P. submitted a communication under the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (Optional Protocol) on behalf of her daughter claiming that Bulgaria had violated articles 1, 2(a)-2(c), 2(e)-2(g), 3, 5, 12 and 15 of CEDAW. She claimed that Bulgaria had failed to:
act with due diligence to protect V.P.P. against sexual assault;
provide an effective remedy and address the health, rehabilitative and other needs of V.P.P.;
provide V.P.P. ongoing protection from B.G.; and
introduce specific legal and policy measures and health services to address violence against women and girls.
S.V.P. also claimed that Bulgaria’s response to her daughter’s assault reflected gender stereotypes related to violence against women and girls.
The Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women has found in Abramova v. Belarus (C/49/D/23/2009) that Belarus’ treatment of a woman detained under administrative arrest violated articles 2(a)-2(b), 2(e)-2(f), 3 and 5(a) of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), read in conjunction with article 1 and the Committee’s General Recommendation No. 19 on violence against women.
L.C. was 13 years old when she was repeatedly raped by a 34-year-old man who lived in her neighborhood in an impoverished region near Peru’s capital city of Lima. Her ordeal started in 2006, and by 2007 she learned that she was pregnant. Desperate, L.C. attempted to commit suicide by jumping off the roof of a building next door to her house. Neighbors discovered her and rushed her to the hospital. But even though doctors concluded that her spine needed to be realigned immediately—and even though abortion in Peru is legal where the mother’s health and life are at risk--they refused to operate on L.C. because she was pregnant. L.C. eventually suffered a miscarriage because of the severity of her injuries. Several weeks after the miscarriage, four months after she was told she needed surgery, L.C. underwent the spinal procedure. She was told shortly thereafter, however, that the surgery would have little to no effect and that she would remain paralyzed. On June 18, 2009, the Center for Reproductive Rights and the Center for the Promotion and Defense of Sexual and Reproductive Rights filed a human rights petition on behalf of L.C. against Peru before the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women. The petition charges that Peru’s failure to implement measures that guarantee a woman’s ability to obtain essential reproductive health services in a timely manner, particularly legal abortion, not only violates the Peruvian Constitution, but international treaty obligations. Among other remedies, L.C. is asking that the Peruvian government acknowledge the human rights violation; provide L.C. with reparations, including physical and mental rehabilitation; and issue necessary measures so that no other woman is denied her right to comprehensive healthcare and therapeutic abortion.
Report located in the third row of the second page - A/HRC/14/22
This is the first thematic report submitted to the Human Rights Council by Rashida Manjoo, Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences, since her appointment in June 2009. In addition to providing an overview of the main activities carried out by the Special Rapporteur, the report focuses on the topic of reparations to women who have been subjected to violence in contexts of both peace and post-conflict.
Report located in the fourth row of the second page - A/HRC/14/22/Add.1
This addendum to the Special Rapporteur’s annual report contains, on a country by country basis, summaries of communications (allegations letters and urgent appeals) sent to Governments on individual cases and general situations of concern to her mandate. This report includes summaries of the communications sent from 1 March 2009 to 20 March 2010 (with respect to allegation letters), and from 3 April 2009 to 15 April 2010 (with respect to urgent appeals). The report also contains summaries of government replies received until 17 May 2010.
In 1996, Karen Tayag Vertido worked as Executive Director of the Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry in the Philippines. She filed a complaint against the then President of the Chamber, Jose B. Custodio, accusing him of raping her. She alleged that the accused offered her a lift home following a business meeting one evening and that, instead, raped her in a nearby hotel.
Ms Vertido subsequently submitted a communication to the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW Committee). She alleged that the acquittal of Mr Custodio breached the right to non-discrimination, the right to an effective remedy, and the freedom from wrongful gender stereotyping, in violation of articles 2(c), 2(d), 2(f) and 5(a) of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW).
1. The Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (hereinafter referred to as “the Committee”), concerned about the multiple forms of discrimination experienced by older women and that older women’s rights are not systematically addressed in States parties’ reports, at its forty-second session, pursuant to article 21 of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (hereinafter referred to as “the Convention”), decided to adopt a general recommendation on older women and protection of their human rights.
2. In its decision 26/III, the Committee recognized that the Convention “is an important tool for addressing the specific issue of the human rights of older women”. General Recommendation No. 25, on article 4, paragraph 1, of the Convention on temporary special measures (see E/CN.6/2004/CRP.3, annex I) also recognises that age is one of the grounds on which women suffer multiple forms of discrimination. In particular, the Committee recognized the need for statistical data disaggregated by age and sex as a way to better assess the situation of older women.
Through this general recommendation, the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (“the Committee”) aims to clarify the scope and meaning of article 2 of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (“the Convention”), which provides ways for States parties to implement domestically the substantive provisions of the Convention. The Committee encourages States parties to translate this general recommendation into national and local languages and to disseminate it widely to all branches of Government, civil society, including the media, academia and human rights and women’s organizations and institutions.
2. The Convention is a dynamic instrument that accommodates the development of international law. Since its first session in 1982, the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women and other actors at the national and international levels have contributed to the clarification and understanding of the substantive content of the Convention’s articles, the specific nature of discrimination against women and the various instruments required for combating such discrimination.
This study is undertaken to provide UNICEF with recommendations for supporting the withdrawal of reservations to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW). While the problem of reservations is well documented as a legal issue, the practical effect of reservations on the primary stakeholders—women, girls, families, and communities—and the practical issues surrounding withdrawal of reservations have received much less attention.
This paper provides an overview of the legal and practical implications of reservations; an examination of the different domestic legal systems in which reservations are entered; a “mapping” of the current reservations to CEDAW; and an exploration of the domestic legal and political contexts in which some of the most critical reservations have been withdrawn.
I am delighted to be here at this very special event celebrating 60 years of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). I would like to share with you some of the most important recent developments in the anti- trafficking movement and the violence against women movement as linked to developments in international family law since the passage of the UDHR. In doing so, I would like to focus on two main developments: (1) at the substantive level—the expansion of the concept of human trafficking itself, originally limited to prostitution, to include the institution of marriage; and (2) at the procedural level—allowing victims of trafficking access to the international justice system as victims of a form of violence against women. Mohamed Y. Mattar