25 November is observed as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. Many activities are organized in Chiang Mai to mark this day to raise awareness and sensitivity on issues around violence against women.
This day also marks the beginning of the 16 days of Activism Against Gender Violence globally (25 November – 10 December). The 16 Days Campaign has been used as an organizing strategy by individuals and groups around the world to call for the elimination of all forms of violence against women by raising awareness about gender-based violence as a human rights issue.
On 12 November 2007, the Domestic Violence Act came into effect in Thailand (better late than never!). Violence against women within their own houses is no longer an internal matter and there are now specific legal and social obligations. People who witness any form of domestic violence are now duty-bound to report to authorities. The Act imposes a jail term of up to six months and/ or a fine of up to 5000 Baht on offenders. The number of reported cases of violence against women within the home has been rising year-by-year in Thailand. Last year there were more than 14,000 documented cases of domestic abuse in Thailand. Bu the actual figure could be much higher, as many cases still go unreported.
Violence against women often results from sexual prejudice existing under a socio-cultural system that favours the domination of males. A large number of women still have to face different forms of violence; ranging from physical, sexual and psychological abuses. Some women are discriminated against due to the social contexts they are in, or because of the specific identities they have regarding religion, race, or sexuality.
In Chiang Mai the "International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women" event takes place in Central Kad Suan Kaew on Tuesday, November 27th at 4:00 – 8:00 pm.
A representative from Thai Women & HIV/AIDS Task Force (TWAT), Monrudee Laphimon, and a freelance writer popularly known by her pen name as ‘Kham Phaka’ are guest speakers.
The event is organized and facilitated by Northern NGO Coalition on AIDS (NNCA), Health & Development Networks (HDN), Thai Women & HIV/AIDS Task Force (TWAT), MPLUS, EMPOWER, Asian Harm Reduction Network (AHRN), MAP Foundation, Raksthai Foundation, The Upper Northern Thai Network of People Living with HIV/AIDS (TNP+_NO), Shan Women Action Network (SWAN), Women League Burma (WLB) and WEAVE.
4.00-4.20 Open ceremony
4.20-4.40 Empowerment performance
4.40-4.50 Music by ethnic minorities (Lahu and Shan)
4.50-5.30 Performance by EQ Group and PREVAIDS
5.30-5.40 Music by ethnic minorities (Kasin and Burmese)
5.40-6.40 NGO Forum
- Kham Phaka, an independent writer
- Monrudee Laphimon, TWAT
6.40-7.00 Music by Chi
7.00-7.05 Animation- Hangman
7.15-7.45 Music & Poem
7.45-8.00 Candle light &singing