|Students at Van Ho Junior Secondary School take part in a competition on preventing gender violence. A campaign to end violence against women and girls is now being held throughout the country. — VNA/VNS Photo Dinh Tran
HA NOI (VNS) — Viet Nam is holding a campaign to end violence against women and girls from now until December 10.
The campaign has been organised by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs, the Women's Union, the Farmers' Union, the United Nations in Viet Nam and other development partners, in co-ordination with the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.
The campaign, called "Join Hands To End Violence Against Women," said violence against women and girls not only seriously affected the physical and spiritual well-being of victims, but also led to huge socio-economic costs.
It includes workshops, policy dialogues, exhibitions, parades in Ha Noi, Hai Duong and Ben Tre Provinces and national educational programmes through the media.
National Assembly Deputy Chairman Uong Chu Luu said at a parade in Ha Noi yesterday that the country had a full legal framework in place to promote gender equality and combat gender-based violence.
He said the Law on Gender Equality issued in 2006 and the Law on Domestic Violence Prevention and Control issued in 2007 was an important foundation for protecting the rights of family members, especially the elderly, women and girls who were often victims of domestic violence.
However, Luu admitted that the prevention of violence against women and girls was still limited, saying relevent agencies should co-ordinate and step up the implementation of the law and improve knowledge about it.
Chairman of the Viet Nam Farmers' Union, Nguyen Quoc Cuong, said the union, which involved nearly 70 per cent of the country's total population, would call on members, especially men, to lift their awareness of the problems.
A national study released by the General Statistics Office and the United Nations in 2010 showed that 58 per cent of married women had experienced at least one form of violence, including physical, mental or sexual, at some point in their lives.
Further, about 50 per cent did not tell anyone about the violence and 87 per cent did not seek help from public services.
The UN study revealed that domestic violence resulted in an overall productivity loss of 1.78 per cent of GDP in 2010.
Pratibha Mehta, UN Resident Co-ordinator in Viet Nam, said people should work together to ensure that Vietnamese women were empowered to speak out on the problem.
A workshop on the prevention of violence against women and girls will be held in Ha Noi today. — VNS