The Gender Center for Empowering Development (GenCED) has called on the government to ratify the ILO C190 as it joins the rest of the world to mark the UN’s “16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence” campaign.
The 16-day campaign is to enhance awareness and deepen advocacy against gender-based violence (GBV) to be concluded with the commemoration of International Human Rights Day on December 10, 2022.
A statement from GenCED, signed by its Executive Director, Madam Esther Tawiah, and copied to the Ghana News Agency, said this year’s theme “Unite! Activism to End Violence Against Women and Girls” called on everyone to stand against Gender-Based Violence (GBV) to ensure that it was eliminated.
It said too many women and children continued to feel vulnerable and insecure because of GBV, which was wrong.
“As an organisation, we encourage you to answer the call to action by speaking up and challenging the norms around you because it would take the efforts of everyone to end violence against women and children.
The International Labour Conference of the International Labour Organisation (ILO), adopted the ILO Convention 190, which came into force on June 25, 2021.
Even though there are no laws to protect women from sexual harassment in the workplace, the statement said the Government of Ghana had still not ratified C190 which would require of it to put in place the necessary laws, and policy measures to prevent and address violence and harassment at work.
According to the Domestic Violence Victims and Support Unit (DOVVSU), more than 60 per cent of Ghanaian women were sexually harassed at the workplace and higher learning institutions, the statement said.
In 2021, GenCED conducted research on sexual harassment in the workplace based on survey data from five regions of the country – Central, Ashanti, Greater Accra, Volta, and Eastern to draw government’s attention to how realistic workplace sexual harassment was.
The findings of the research showed that sexual harassment continued to prevail in workplaces due to power differential that existed at work, gender stereotypes entrenched by other societal norms, and the lack of proper strict legislation such as sexual harassment policies to deal with it.
The findings according to the statement also revealed that women who faced sexual harassment were reluctant to report it because of the lack of effective reporting mechanisms in the workplace and fear of loss of job.
“To eliminate Gender-based Violence means to increase awareness about it through advocacy and that is exactly what we do and will continue to do as an organisation,” Madam Tawiah said.
Since its establishment, GenCED has championed the rights of women and children through advocacy.
The statement admonished the public to join GenCEDgh on social media to speak up against gender-based violence using #16Days #EndGBV.
Gender Centre for Empowering Development (GenCED) is a Non-governmental Organisation that seeks to empower women and youth for sustainable development in communities.
GenCED is currently focused on key areas of development as enclosed in the 12 Critical Areas of Worry in the Beijing Platform for Action: Governance, Social interference Issues, and Entrepreneurship.