Act to end violence against women & children in Nigeria and throughout the world!
The kidnapping of nearly 300 girls in Nigeria by an
extremist group has caught the attention of the entire international community.
Such glaring atrocities shock our conscience and lead us to demand action.
We stand with our global partners in urgent
solidarity, crying out for the release of these girls. Likewise, we commend
the Senate for passing a resolution condemning the kidnapping, and applaud that
President Obama has committed a U.S. team to help recover the girls.
We know too that our faith compels us to reach for more
holistic and sustained solutions for this and the other incidents like it,
which take place with alarming frequency, often without the world’s notice. The
grave reality remains that this kidnapping is part of a larger global crisis in
which gender-based violence (GBV) continues to occur in every country around
the world on a daily basis.
We cannot stand by
while women and girls are used as tools of war and continue to experience
It is estimated that one out of every three women worldwide
will experience physical or sexual abuse during her lifetime, with rates
reaching 70 percent in some countries. Such violence includes rape, domestic
violence, human trafficking, honor killings, child marriage, and genital
mutilation. Girls are denied access to education, the political and economic
rights of women and girls are oppressed, and women and girls are used as tools
is a human rights violation, a public health epidemic, and a barrier to
addressing broader global challenges such as extreme poverty and hunger,
HIV/AIDS, and international conflict.
The bipartisan International Violence Against Women Act
(I-VAWA) was reintroduced this week in the Senate, and it could not have come
at a better time. I-VAWA makes ending violence against women and girls a top
diplomatic and foreign assistance priority. It will streamline and better
synchronize programming across various U.S. government agencies, making
addressing gender-based violence a cornerstone of U.S. development and foreign
policy by coordinating and integrating existing programs. I-VAWA is a
multi-pronged approach that would:
- Increase economic opportunity and education for
women and girls;
- Strengthen legal and judicial protection to
address violence against women and girls;
- Increase health sector capacity to address GBV
by integrating GBV programs into already existing health programs;
- Support public awareness programs to change
attitudes that condone and encourage violence against women and girls,
emphasizing community-based solutions.
The kidnapping of the Nigerian girls makes it clear why this
multi-faceted approach to addressing gender-based violence is so necessary. We
know that as faith advocates we must prevent such acts of violence by
comprehensively working to empower women and girls globally.
Join us in speaking
out in solidarity with girls in Nigeria, and with women and children who suffer
violence throughout the world.
Personalize the subject and text of the message below with your own words, if you wish.
- Complete the form below with your information.
- Click the Send Message button to send your letter to these decision makers:
- Your Senators
- Your Representative
Dear [Decision Maker],
[City, State ZIP]