Today marks the 3rd day into the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence across the world. This year’s activism is running under the theme, “Orange the world: End violence against women now.”
This is the time of the year when every discourse is directed towards addressing the cancer of violence.
According to the UNHR, Gender-Based Violence refers to harmful acts directed at an individual based on their gender. It is rooted in gender inequality, the abuse of power, and harmful norms.
It is a fact that statistics show that women are more susceptible to be at the receiving end of gender-based violence in the community.
According to The 2019 Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) report shows that 39.4% of adolescent girls and women aged 15-49 have experienced physical violence since age 15 and among females aged 15-49 years, 11.6% had experienced sexual violence in their lives.
Naturally, the course has now been diluted to be biased towards women.
When the word gender is mentioned, women’s issues pop at the top because, for a long time, the patriarchy that exists within societies has taken so much away from women.
However, several men are also falling victim to Gender-Based Violence. Most would not come out of the shelves because society itself has nurtured men to be alphas who will be shamed if they were to be violated by the female gender.
This toxic masculinity, a societal stereotype that makes it hard to believe that men can also be victims of gender-related violence.
Musasa national hotline recorded a total of 6,832 gender based violence calls from the beginning of the lockdown on 30 March until the end of December 2020. 6% of these calls were from male victims.
Who will speak for these men and also voice their concerns during the 16 Days Activism. The current efforts may be slowly closing the door to male victims.
Where international organizations, local institutions focus on sexual violence directed at women and girls is inevitable, consideration should be given to exploring the situation of both male and female victims