Press Release

Start of the campaign "16 days of activism against the gender-based violence": #HearmeToo

27 November 2018

November 26, 2018, Kyiv - Today, on the occasion of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and Girls, the United Nations in Ukraine presented a global campaign "16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence", this year's topic was "#HearMeToo: Stop Violence Against Women and girls".

 

Unfortunately, gender-based violence in Ukraine is a widespread and systematic phenomenon, while only 1 in 3 affected women reports it. The fear that the incident report will not be trusted, and that the victim, rather than the perpetrator, will be blamed, makes the victims to remain silent and conceals the true incidence of violence. Violence can be different: physical, sexual, psychological, economic. You can make the problem visible by starting with the dialog. Only recognizing the problem and seeking help can break the cycle of violence and make society respond to it - to defend, to warn, to act.

 

According to statistics, 90% of victims of gender-based violence are women. According to a survey on the prevalence of this phenomenon in Ukraine in 2014, at least 22% of women aged 15-49 experienced at least one form of violence at least once in their life.

Sixteen prominent women in Ukraine dared not to remain silent and shared stories about the cases of obvious and implied violence in the circle of sisters: these are TV hosts Solomiya Vytvitska, Julia Zorya and Nelya Shovkoplyas, writers Anastasia Melnichenko and Olga Yatsenko, actress Yanina Andreyeva, prima ballerina Krystyna Shyshpor, radio host Miriam Drahina, cinema and advertising producer Yana Altukhova, PR-director of Pianoboy band Olha Shurova, reform expert Vladyslava Mahaletska, public figures and activists Ulyana Pcholkina, Anastasia Eva Domani, Zemfira Kondur, Olha Polyakova and Olena Stryzhak. Each of these stories will be published on the Facebook page and on the website of the UN Representative Office in Ukraine and womo.ua website within 16 days.

 

Famous men - Valeriy Kharchyshyn (the frontman of the Druha Rika band), Taras Topolya (frontman of the Antytila band) and Serhiy Babkin, also supported the campaign and called for action to respond to violence against women and girls in the video "#HearMeToo. Do not be silent - break the circle of violence".

 "#HearMeToo (#ПочуйМене) highlights the voices of women and girls who have survived violence, who protect the women rights everyday, while many of them seldom appear in the headlines and the limelight of media attention. I see three goals on which we need to focus: to influence the public perception of violence, since a significant percentage of the population still justifies violence against women. There should be changes in providing services to people affected by violence and, of course, introducing  more severe penalties for committing acts of violence", said UN Resident Coordinator in Ukraine Osnat Lubrani.

This year, the UN team in Ukraine has joined forces with more than 75 partners to support UNiTE's United Nations Secretary-General's Campaign for the Elimination of Violence Against Women (UNiTE). The calendar of all events is available on the website of the UN Office in Ukraine: http://www.un.org.ua/images/Unite_calendar_ukr.pdf. 

Recently, the global movements #MeToo, #TimesUp, #BalanceTonPorc, #NiUnaMenos, HollaBack! і #TotalShutdown, #янебоюсясказати managed to end the isolation and created a global circle of women's support. Activists call that the perpetrators be held accountable, expose cases of violence at all levels - from high positions to ordinary employees.