Press Release

Ukraine plans to tackle gender-based violence by 2030

24 February 2020

On February 20-21, the International Forum "Ukraine is on Track for Combating Domestic and Gender-Based Violence" was organized in Kyiv by the United Nations Population Fund. Main results of building a system of effective response to cases of domestic violence, as well as priority actions that the Government of Ukraine plans to take in order to achieve intolerance to any form of domestic violence and to prevent it in the future, were presented during the Forum.

“It is difficult for me both as the President’s wife and as a person to stand aside from the problem of violence. This problem is something that is "uncomfortable" to talk about. Beatings, fears, shame are not made public. However, there is never one victim in such situations. This is always a disaster for the whole family. So together we must do all we can to change this situation of helplessness”, Ms. Olena Zelenska, the First Lady of Ukraine, emphasized in her speech.

 

Over the last 5 years, new legislation has been adopted in Ukraine that has made it possible to respond effectively to domestic violence cases, create models of assistance and referrals. Some models of services have been developed: shelters for the victims, psychosocial support mobile teams, police response groups (POLINA), National Hotline.

“For the first time in the history of Ukraine, the National Hotline 1547 has already been launched for the victims of human trafficking, domestic violence, gender-based violence, violence against children. The Hotline is still working in a pilot mode, but it has already received over 1,200 calls”, said Ms. Yulia Sokolovska, the Minister of Social Policy.

The first steps in implementing the laws are already yielding results. The number of reported cases is increasing. The violence ceases to be a closed topic, and victims believe they can receive guaranteed help and protection. In particular, according to Deputy Minister of Internal Affairs of Ukraine Ms. Kateryna Pavlichenko, in 2019, the POLINA mobile police groups made 142,000 visits in response to domestic violence reporting calls.

“Ukraine is an example of a country in the region of Eastern Europe and Central Asia that has been successfully combating domestic violence. It is important to follow the set trend and then Ukraine can become such an example for the whole world”, pointed out Ian McFarlane, acting Director of the UNFPA in Eastern Europe and Central Asia.

The program for combating gender-based violence in Ukraine is supported by the governments of the United Kingdom, Canada and Estonia. According to Ms. Melinda Simmons, British Ambassador to Ukraine, it is the impunity in cases of violence that makes this problem particularly acute in society. Ambassador of Canada to Ukraine Ms. Larisa Galadza said that the problem of domestic violence is a responsibility of each and every one, since tolerance still exists in society.

For more information, please contact the United Nations Population Fund Office: 096-506-55-88, zubchenko@unfpa.org