All forms of violence are unacceptable—from schoolyard bullying to gun violence. As Presbyterian Women, we are particularly concerned with gender-based violence and racism. While these issues may feel too big to address, our faith calls us to respond by promoting reconciliation and advocating for policies that address systemic issues contributing to violence.
Though the status of women has improved in the last several decades through much of the world, there is still a long way to go. From structural discrimination to victimization in human trafficking, women around the world continue to need advocacy. Presbyterian Women participate in local, national and international efforts to end violence against women.
Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW)
Did you know that the United States is just one of six United Nations member states that have not ratified a treaty that works to end the oppression of women around the world? This treaty, called the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), addresses the major issues facing women worldwide, including human trafficking, education, employment, and economic and social standing.
Join the “Cities for CEDAW” campaign, putting together a coalition in your area to draft and pass a city ordinance modeled on CEDAW.
Violence Against Women
Presbyterian Women Churchwide has partnered with the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) to create resources for congregations willing to have Courageous Conversations about sexual- or gender-based violence. Additionally, PW, with Presbyterians Against Domestic Violence, created a curriculum for men and men’s groups, entitled Men in the Mirror: Orienting Our Lives toward a Christ-Centered Masculinity. This curriculum provides “men and boys with an opportunity to critically assess the conflicting messages that define masculinity and to explore what makes a healthy relationship.”
In addition to these partnerships, Presbyterian Churchwide encourages groups to observe:
• Domestic Violence Awareness Month (October)
• International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women (November 25)
• Thursdays in Black, a World Council of Churches initiative to protest violence against women and show support for the women who experience violence*
• Orange Days (the 25th of each month) and the UN’s UNiTE to End Violence Against Women campaign
*World Council of Churches has a number of downloadable resources to promote Thursdays in Black. A Thursdays in Black bookmark is also available for download, courtesy of CABSA (Christian AIDS Bureau of Southern Africa).
To ask a question or to learn more about Violence, contact Yvonne Hileman.