Latin America / AMERIPOL

Violence against women increases in times of pandemic

02 December 2020
Pilar Llop, presidenta del Senado

Death of women who are victims of gender-based violence is the final outcome of a pattern of violent behaviour which is deeply ingrained in the cultures of most countries in the world. The current situation, marked by restrictions on freedom of movement, has exacerbated the risk of gender violence and  has condemned many women to living in precarious, dangerous situations.

In this context, and to mark the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, the EL PAcCTO: apoyo a AMERIPOL project has organised a virtual conference entitled: “Effects of the pandemic on gender violence and human trafficking”.

The Police Community of America ( AMERIPOL) is the integrativepolice cooperation body in the region and promotes standardisation of investigative practices. To contribute to this objective, the cooperation project financed by the European Union and managed by FIIAPP and Expetise France,  EL PAcCTO: Apoyo a AMERIPOL organises training sessions to exchange experiences and share knowledge between the member countries of AMERIPOL and the European Union.

This time it has organised a video conference on the fight against all forms of gender-based violence, including human trafficking with the aim of promoting good practices and lessons learned among police forces and authorities.

The event was officially opened by Commissioner Simone dos Santos Guerra, general coordinator of police cooperation of the Brazilian federal police, and Vania Bonalberti , head of programmes for Latin America at the Directorate General for Cooperation and Development of the European Commission (DEVCO), who underlined the harm caused by domestic confinement due to the pandemic and the pivotal role of police cooperation, as the problem is not limited to the private sphere, but is a violation of human rights and a scourge that exists in all types of society.

Among the different presentations by countries on both sides of the Atlantic, the president of the Spanish State Senate, Pilar Llop talked about the measures that Spain has taken to combat gender violence and how they have been adjusted to deal with the new situation generated by COVID19.

Cristina Fabre , from the European Institute for Gender Equality, presented the findings of a recent study that analyses the impact of COVID19 on gender violence at the regional level in Europe. Judge Ana Andrea Villa, from the Dominican Republic, and Captain Mariuxi Enríquez, from the Ecuadorian National Police, reported on the institutional vision from the point of view of the Public Ministry and the police forces, respectively. The project EUROSocial+ has been also involved.

The attendees were mainly from national units and observer agencies of AMERIPOL (about), Ministries of the Interior and Latin American Ministries of Equality and Social Affairs and units specialising in violence against women in police forces, prosecutors and competent services in this matter.