CGE ALARMED OVER HEIGHTENING STATE OF GENDER BASED VIOLENCE IN SOUTH AFRICA At its quarterly Plenary meeting held on the 16- 18 August, 2017, in Johannesburg, the Commission for Gender Equality (CGE), reflected on a number of recent incidents of violence against women and related issues of concern for the country, and wishes to bring to the attention of the nation the following: In the absence of a national strategic plan on gender based violence as well as a national coordinating structure bringing together the efforts of all stakeholders (in government, the private sector and civil society) to promote gender equality, the Commission believes there has sadly been a rolling back of the gains made in the advancement of the gender agenda; Various studies including the Commission’s studies point to a dire need for a consolidated approach that will be effectively coordinated to address the root causes of these atrocities against women and children in our communities. The Commission in the past three years has conducted numerous research work on national effort/programme to deal with gender based violence. All studies indicate that the country is failing to come up with a coordinated approach to deal with the scourge against gender based violence. In recent months, we have witnessed a rising tidal wave of gender-based violence, including this month of August in which the country commemorates the rights and historic struggles of women; Patriarchy remains endemic in our society, permeating the highest levels of leadership even turning those who ordinarily would be expected to be models of gender sensitivity into perpetrators of gender-based violence; ala Deputy Minister of Higher Education Mduduzi Manana, Marks Maponyane etc The Commission for Gender Equality therefore urges all parties concerned to observe the following points of action:
- Government in general must put in place a National Co-ordinating Structure to combat gender-based violence;
- The Ministry of Women in the Presidency must mobilise and re-energise stakeholders within the National Gender Machinery, and other related structures to take lead the fight to end the scourge of gender-based violence;
- The Commission urges all progressive forces in society to develop a programme to collectively mobilise the necessary resources across the country to fight the scourge of gender -based violence.
- That gender based violence work is carried out #365days
- We urge men and boys to stand up in solidarity with other stakeholders in the fight against gender-based violence, to help our communities to combat atrocities against women, children, the elderly, people with disabilities.
- Let this month be the turning point in the struggle for gender justice in South Africa.
- We must ensure that women’s lives are not dominated by fear and insecurity. Many women feel like “the hunted” in their own homes, in their communities and in their workplaces, indeed even in places of worship.
ARE THE FPB’S CLASSIFICATION GUIDELINES STILL REFLECTIVE OF SOCIETAL NORMS AND VALUES OF THE SOUTH AFRICAN PUBLIC? Johannesburg, 17 August 2017- The Film and Publication Board (FPB) is undertaking a process of reviewing its current Classification Guidelines to measure whether they are still reflective of South Africa’s societal norms and values. A stakeholder and media dialogue will be hosted at the Birchwood Hotel and Conference Center on the 23rd August 2017, under the theme “Sexual Violence and its prevalence in the media”. The dialogue will be focusing on how exposure to violence, sex and sexual violence in the media impacts on societal norms and values. “South Africa is rated amongst the worst societies when it comes to violence against women and children. As part of commemorating women’s month, the FPB wants to focus on sexual violence in the media through assessing the prevalence of gender stereotypes and gender based violence in the media,” says Abongile Mashele, FPB’s Acting Chief Operations Officer. She further states that violence against women does not end with physical violence; other forms of violence including emotional and psychological violence have no visible scars but have long effects on victims and survivors. These can be worsened through constant exposure to similar themes in the media through film and other forms of entertainment media. Furthermore, constant exposure can lead to children being desensitized and normalizing such behavior. The FPB has partnered with Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) for the dialogues. The partnership stems from the previous classification guidelines review process which introduced the classifiable element of “Sexual Violence (SV)”. The SV classifiable element warns consumers in advance that the content has sexual violence scenes such as rape and physical violence. The dialogues seeks to kick start the process of reviewing the current Classification Guidelines. Previously, the classification guidelines were reviewed every two years and where there were legal amendments it was revised as deemed necessary. However, the Council of the FPB took the view that norms, values and tolerance levels do not change rapidly over two years. A five year review period was introduced to take into consideration long term changes in cultural norms and values. Play the best website friv games. ENDS Gender Based violence - Stakeholder and Media dialogue Issued by: Mr. Sipho Mkhwanazi Digital Content Coordinator 083 573 2543 Enquiries: Ms. Manala Botolo Acting Manager Communications and Public Education 082 860 6748 Notes to the Editor The current classification guidelines were last reviewed in 2012 and subsequently published in October 2014 and have been applied since. The purpose of the Film and Publication Board (“FPB”) is to inter alia provide consumer advice to enable adults to make informed viewing, reading and gaming choices for both themselves and the children in their care. Furthermore, the FPB is mandated to protect children from exposure to disturbing and harmful materials and from premature exposure to adult experiences. To this end, the FPB classifies films, interactive computer games and certain publications using the classification guidelines as approved by the Council of the FPB in consultation with the Minister of Communications (“Minister”) pursuant to the provisions of section 4A(1)(a) of the Films and Publications Act 65 of 1996, as amended (“FP Act or the Act”).
The Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) has observed with great interest the heightened activism in addressing gender equality by multi-sectorial organisations. Informed by its own studies on gender transformation that looked at the mining sector, institutions of higher learning and various industries, the Commission believes there has been minimal progress in addressing gender transformation in the workplace. While women constitute 51% of the population in the country, they continue to remain largely oppressed and exploited. Women continue to face persistent marginalisation from power and influence. This can be attributed to a range of factors including the influences of South Africa’s colonial history and dominant patriarchal paradigms. The Commission’s Employment Equity report points to a dire situation of gender discrimination in the workplace, e.g. inadequate policy adherence that seek to empower women. The report has also noted an increase in reported cases of sexual harassment and rape. The Gender Commission is also cognisant that there are pay gaps between men and women, yet they are doing the same job with similar qualification. The Commission will continue to support any structure in our society that has a deep interest in ensuring that gender discrimination, women empowerment and career progression of women in the workplace is addressed. The CGE appeals to the leaders of the industries to be cognisant of women’s basic human rights such as maternity leave and provision of suitable health and safety personal protective equipment. Trade Unions should continue raising women worker rights in the workplaces. We also implore the Private sector to strongly consider and share Good practices inter sectorally and across the economic sectors on women employment. sexkl We urge women that are affected by the above-mentioned aspects to call our Toll-Free Number 0800 007 709 to report such cases. ENDS, Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date: 26 August 2017 Contact Person: Javu Baloyi Tel: 083 579 3306 The Commission for Gender Equality The Commission for Gender Equality is established in terms of Section 181 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa in order to promote respect for gender equality and the protection, development and attainment of gender equality.
Press Release For immediate release: 12 April 2017 To Producers, Editors and Reporters CGE finds the latest Zapiro Cartoon on Lady South Africa Inappropriate In a country where sexual violence and rape are endemic, the Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) finds the latest work on Lady South Africa by Cartoonist Jonathan “Zapiro” Shapiro in a bad taste. The Commission believes the metaphor of using rape to drive the message across is not appropriate. Equally so, it is our view as the Commission that going forward people should not use the word “rape” loosely as it invokes emotion and rescars survivors of rape. The CGE understands that there is freedom of expression, however that freedom comes with responsibilities particularly when it comes to symbolisms that are being used in this regard to communicate a message to the broader society. The CGE believes that rape cannot be normailised regardless of the situation. As the Commission, we constantly conduct legal clinics and outreach programmes as a way of educating citizenry about the scourge and what to do in instances where rape has taken place. The prevalence of rape as per the 2016 Crime statistics on Sexual Offences was 51 895, moreso with views that this area of crime statistics is prone to under-reporting by victims of crime, which suggests that the SAPS crime statistics relating to sexual offences might not be a true reflection of the current state of sexual offences in the country. Clearly this indicates that the symbolism or the metaphor of rape cannot be used to equate the two as mutually inclusive. Rape dehumanizes human beings. It is a trauma that those that have not been subjected to it, may think little of it. The CGE therefore is asking Zapiro to reflect and ascertain whether given our diversity this type of symbolism is helpful without restricting freedom of expression. We hope out this he will reconsider the use of rape as symbolism to express his view. Alternatyvi medicina, masažas, nevaisingumo gydymas žolelėmis, bičių duonelė, limfodrenažinis masažas, dietos, imuniteto stiprinimas, gintaras, alijošius, želatina, sveika mityba ir kiti straipsniai apie sveikatą: netradicinemedicina.com The CGE therefore encourages the public to make use of its Toll – Free number 0800 007 709, to report any matter that relates to gender based violence. Alternatively, members of the public may also visit CGE offices which are based in all nine provinces to report such cases. Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date: 12 April 2017 Contact Person: Javu Baloyi Tel: 083 579 3306 The Commission for Gender Equal ity is established in terms of Section 181 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa to promote respect for gender equality and the protection, development and attainment of gender equality.
Press Release For Immediate release: 28 March 2017 To: Editors, Producers and Reporters CGE bids farewell to former Human Rights Struggle Stalwart Mr. Ahmed “Uncle Kathy” Kathrada
Today South Africans and the rest of the world woke up to the news of Mr. Ahmed “Uncle Kathy” Kathrada’s passing. The former human rights struggle icon sadly passed away at Dr. Gordon Hospital last night following an operation to remove a blood clot in his brain. The Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) joins the nation in sending its heartfelt condolences to the Kathrada family, Mme Barbara Hogan, the African National Congress (ANC) and his comrades.
This moment calls on us to uphold the values that this activist for justice espoused and challenges all of us to continue to strive for a just society that is free from all forms of oppression and inequalities. South Africans in all walks will remember Uncle Kathy as a humbly, selfless person who championed for the human rights of all and ideologised a non-racial, non-sexist, and democratic society in South Africa.
As South Africans, we need to celebrate uncle Kathy’s life through respecting and upholding the values of the Constitution, developing programmes that will eradicate poverty and ending violence against vulnerable groups including children, women, LGBTI community, disabled people and the elderly people”, said Ms. Thoko Mpumlwana, Acting Chairperson of the Commission for Gender Equality.
It is through heroes like Uncle Kathy that during the transition period institutions supporting constitutional democracy like CGE were established. Uncle Kathy’s humility, selflessness and resilience for the advancement of human rights saw him starting the Ahmed Kathrada foundation to continue the fight for the ideals that he lived for until the end.
On behalf of the Commission for Gender Equality, “We say your memory and what you laboured for will be your legacy. We shall never forget the footprints you left behind”, Thoko Mpumlwana added. credit card dumpsMay your soul rest in peace, Hamba Kahle, lala ngoxolo, Uncle Kathy! ENDS Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date: 28 March 2017 Contact Person: Javu Baloyi Tel: 083 579 3306 The Commission for Gender Equality is established in terms of Section 187 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa to promote respect for gender equality and the protection, development and attainment of gender equality.
Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Women In the Presidency to Attend CGE Legal Clinic at Siyabuswa, Dikgwale Community Hall, Dr. J. S. Moroka Local Municipality, Mpumalanga Province
Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Women In the Presidency to Attend CGE Legal Clinic at Siyabuswa, Dikgwale Community Hall, Dr. J. S. Moroka Local Municipality, Mpumalanga Province Date: 30 March 2017 Time: 10h00 – 13h00 RSVP: Javu Baloyi Javu@cge.org.za or 083 579 3306 On the 30th March 2017 Members of Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Women in the Presidency, led by Committee Chairperson Honourable Thandi Memela, will attend a Legal Clinic to be conducted by the Commission for Gender Equality (CGE). This event will take place in Siyabuswa, Dikgwale Community Hall, in the Dr. J. S. Moroka Local Municipality in the Mpumalanga Province. The Legal Clinic became necessary due to the consultative meeting which the CGE held with the community members during its recent awareness campaigns on Gender Based Violence, Sexual Offences, issues of Land and Agriculture, Child Headed Families, Substance Abuse, HIV and AIDS. The visit to Mpumalanga by the Portfolio Committee is part of its oversight work, and comes at an opportune time, as Community members are increasingly dissatisfied with a range of gendered issues that are not being addressed in their area. Members of the Committee will therefore utilize this opportunity to engage directly with local community members as part of their oversight work and assess the extent to which gender related issues are being addressed by local government. Representatives of the Dr. J. S. Moroka Local Municipality, local church leaders, traditional leaders, civic organisations, gender activists, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and women formations are expected to attend the event. The CGE is therefore inviting members of the media to be part of this event, as Portfolio Committee Members will be expected to address community members and local authorities on issues of concern to be identified for possible policy responses and intervention. The CGE’s constitutional mandate is to promote respect for gender equality and the protection, development and attainment of gender equality. The Legal Clinic will therefore serve as an opportunity for the CGE and Parliament’s Portfolio Committee to jointly hold local authorities accountable and ensure effective responses to the needs of local community members. Ends,
Media Release For immediate Release: 09 November 2016 To: Editors, Producers and Reporters CGE celebrates International Human Rights Day The year 2016 marks 20 years since the adoption of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, similarly, it is also 20 years since the promulgation of Act 39 of 1996 that gave birth to the Commission for Gender Equality. Indeed, this year’s International Human Rights day is celebrated with lots of milestones having been achieved. As South Africans, we have so much to celebrate, moreso as a human rights institution that has been established to help strengthen and deepen democracy. 22 years since the advent of democracy has seen significant protocols, treaties, conventions that are geared into safeguarding the rights of individuals being signed and ratified. South Africa also started with the initiative of putting in place mechanisms to safe guard the rights of women and children, by establishing structures such as the Child Protection Unit (CPU) in 1986. The CPU was later expanded to become Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Units (FCS) in 1995. The specialised Sexual Offences Court was first introduced in South Africa as a pilot project aimed at improving the adjudication of sexual offences in 1993 at Wynberg Regional Court in Cape Town. The court was considered as an intervention mechanism to prevent secondary victimisation that was suffered by the victims at the hands of the criminal justice system. The National Crime Prevention Strategy (NCPS) was another milestone that came out of the collaboration of government and the Civil Society to curb the scourge of crime, which was mostly exerted to the vulnerable groups due to their minority status both economically and socially. The NCPS led to the establishment of Victim Support and Victim Empowerment Programmes which were aimed at empowering victims and preventing revictimisation. The Strategy was adopted in 1996. The Commission also acted as friend of the court (amicus curiae) on the Bhe Case, where two laws (Black Administration Act and Instestate law of Succession Act) explained briefly hereunder should be declared unconstitutional and further that Instestate Succession Act must apply to Blacks living under customary law. The Commission in preparation for the country periodic reporting in 2010 facilitated the Mock trial where the two members of the CEDAW Committee were invited to assist the country on what to expect during the time of reporting at the Commission on Status of Women (CSW) session in New York. One of the CGE’s initiatives was making follow ups on country reservations on the African Protocol, engaging with the parliament and requesting withdrawal of reservations. One of the Commissions milestones is the convening of the Employment Equity Hearings, which were geared towards holding the Public and the Private Sector organisations accountable in terms of the implementation of the Employment Equity Act. Similarly, the convening of investigative hearings with Institutions of Higher Learning to ascertain the extent of progress made and the challenges faced in promoting gender transformation. The CGE’s Legal Department has introduced a robust approach to complaints handling and litigation. Moreover, all provincial offices are accredited with their respective Law Societies as Legal Clinics In the recent constitutional court case of Modjadji Florah Mayelane v Mphephu Maria Ngwenyama and Another, which centered on the issue of validity of a man’s marriages if his first wife is not aware that these have taken place, or has not accepted these, the CGE was amicus curiae and assisted the court in assessing the case from a gender perspective. The CGE joined as amicus curiae in the landmark case of Bhe and Others v Magistrate, Khayelitsha, and Others (Commission for Gender Equality as Amicus Curiae); Shibi v Sithole and Others; South African Human Rights Commission and Another v President of the Republic of South Africa and Another 2005 (1) SA 580 (CC) wherein the Constitutional Court confirmed the orders of the High Courts declaring the rule of primogeniture in customary law of succession as inconsistent with the Constitution and, therefore, invalid The CGE also participated in another heralded constitutional case, Shilubana and Others v Nwamitwa (National Movement of Rural Women and Commission for Gender Equality as Amicus Curiae) 2007 (5) SA 620 (CC), traditional authorities are allowed to develop customary law in accordance with norms and values of the Constitution. Through its complaints handling mechanism the CGE’s Legal Officers have also assisted the South African Police Services (SAPS) in rescuing young girls from forced marriages such as in the case which occurred in Mpumalanga. Through the research department, in the past 20 years, the commission has conducted countless research projects to generate knowledge and to monitor the implementation of different frameworks that protect and promote gender transformation and compliance in the country. Different issues such as Land Rights, Widowhood, Victims Charter, monitoring of 365 Days National Action Plan have been researched. The Commission also introduced a standard Gender Barometer Web-based monitoring tool that has been used to monitor compliance of different departments and municipalities on their implementation of gender regulatory frameworks. The department has also devised the strategy of developing the Policy Briefs out of the published research projects, which are presented to the Policy Makers and Accounting Officers within the departments in the form of Policy Dialogues. This is a good initiative as it enables the Commission to present their findings to the Policy Makers for positive reaction. The Commission through the Department of Public Education and Information (PEI), employ different advocacy strategies to reach the communities at their grassroots levels. The rational is to sensitise members of the communities about the regulatory frameworks that are in place to protect them and the strategies to be followed to access such frameworks. The PEI Department carries out its functions through conducting dialogues; conducting information sharing sessions; conducting seminars, conferences; conducting workshops; conducting community radio interviews; campaigns; road-shows; capacity building and exhibitions. All these are done in order to educate, capacitate and raise awareness about gender equality and human rights issues. There are a number of interventions that the PEI department is exploring in addressing the strategic objectives, namely :Gender based Violence schools education programme during youth month, Women’s empowerment programme during Women’s month; 16 days of Activism programme ,Human Rights and Gender Equality Programme during Human’s Rights Month, Cultural and Religious intervention programmes ,Joint coordinated programme on Lesbians gays, bisexual, transgendered and Intersex persons, Joint coordinated programme on GBV in Institutions of Higher Learning and Partnership with South African Local Government Association (SALGA) on gender equality The Commission has been working with men since its inception in order to achieve gender transformation and gender justice. “The CGE came to a realization that in order to challenge patriarchy and its toxic consequences it in needed constructive male engagement, encourage men to be positive role models and care givers and work with various men formation”, Said Mr. Mfanozelwe Shozi, the chairperson of the Commission for Gender Equality. We urge members of the public who have knowledge of and information on acts of gender based violence, human rights violation on the basis of gender and abuse to call our Toll Free Number 0800 007 709 to report such cases. ENDS, Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date: 09 December 2016 Contact Person: Javu Baloyi Tel: 083 579 3306 The Commission for Gender Equality is established in terms of Section 187 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa in order to promote respect for gender equality and the protection, development and attainment of gender equality.
Press release For Immediate Release: 02 December 2016 To: Editors, Producers and Reporters CGE GAUTENG OFFICE HOSTS OUTREACH AND LEGAL ADVISORY CLINIC On the 3rd December 2016 the Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) in Gauteng will host outreach and legal advisory clinic in Alexandra at 10h00. The Commission for Gender Equality is an independent state institution established in terms of Chapter 9 of the Constitution Act No: 108 of 1996 of the Republic of South Africa. The powers and functions of the CGE are outlined in the Commission on Gender Equality Act, No 39 of 1996 (CGE Act). Section 11(b) of the CGE Act requires the CGE to develop, manage or conduct public information and education programmes to foster public understanding of matters linked to the promotion of gender equality, as well as the role and activities of the CGE. Through the CGE’s mandate, the Department of Public Education and Information is the information hub of the CGE. This department ensures that the CGE remains relevant and accessible to the public at large. The CGE continues to fulfil its mandate of information dissemination and advocacy in relation to human rights and gender equality. The event on Saturday will reflect activities undertaken by the education officer, legal officer and stakeholders. The focus is on; to raise awareness and educate people about services available for victims of Gender Based Violence and Intimate Partner Violence, to bring closer to the public services for the purpose of generating complaints, to establish good working relationships with stakeholders. The Gauteng Provincial Office strives to be proactive and take a lead in fostering positive relationships with stakeholders. ENDS, Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date: 02 December 2016 Contact Person: Zanele Ncwane Tel: 082 529 6937 The Commission for Gender Equality is established in terms of Section 187 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa in order to promote respect for gender equality and the protection, development and attainment of gender equality.
Press release For Immediate Release: 18 November 2016 To: Editors, Producers and Reporters CGE URGES MEN TO TALK AND STOP MALE SUICIDE On 19 November 2016 the Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) will be joining hands with South African men as well as with men representing more than 60 Countries to celebrate International Men’s Day under the theme “Stop Male Suicide”. International Men’s Day focuses on raising awareness on men’s and boy’s health, improving gender relations, promoting gender equality, and highlighting positive role models. This year’s theme seeks to highlight the dangers that men are faced with in terms of suicide. Research has shown that the suicide rate is worse for men than women. Globally, male life expectancy at birth in 2015 was 69 years in comparison to 74 years for females. the Commission for Gender Equality calls for men to “speak out” about the challenges they face in life. The voices of men should be heard, their positive role and contributions in our society must be recognized, men are humans who must be affirmed and accorded an opportunity to learn from various experiences. Men must be encouraged to deal with mental challenges that tend to result in suicide. The CGE is also cognizant of the fact that patriarchal upbringing has killed the softer side in men to engage on crucial issues as consequence die in silence. CGE is encouraging men to talk about suicide as help is always available. In addition, any marginalisation of men could also have a ripple effect on the boy child who could assume suicide is the only solution when faced with challenges or difficulties. Therefore, society needs to embrace men, recognize their value, understand their needs and make an effort to both support them in realizing that they are an important component in the home, in society, in the world and have a meaningful role to play. Therefore, suicide is not an option. In a society where the stereotype exists that “men don’t cry “has resulted in circumstances where men have been subjected to ridicule when they talk about domestic abuse and sexual violence in their homes. Due to some of these constraints many men have either continued or worse perished in silence. The CGE is of the view that platforms should be created for men and their diversity of viewpoints to engage on various topical issues in order to help address suicidal tendencies. We also call upon the police to be sensitive to men when they report issues of abuse instead of laughing or mocking them. vertimų biuras Vilniuje - lingvobalt.lt The Commission for Gender Equality throughout the 16 Days of Activism will also embark in legal clinics and outreach programmes that are geared into capacitating and educating men about issues relating to eliminating violence against women and Children. We assist men establish their own Men's Forum wherein issues such as suicide could be discussed. ENDS, Issued by: Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) Date: 18 November 2016 Contact Person: Javu Baloyi Tel: 083 579 3306 The Commission for Gender Equality is established in terms of Section 187 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa in order to promote respect for gender equality and the protection, development and attainment of gender equality.