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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
Year : 2018  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 105-106

Necessity to Address Gender-Based Violence in the Conflict-Affected Regions of Myanmar: United Nations Population Fund


Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College & Research Institute, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

Date of Web Publication28-Aug-2018

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Saurabh R Shrivastava
Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College & Research Institute, 3rd Floor, Ammapettai Village, Thiruporur-Guduvancherry Main Road, Sembakkam Post, Kancheepuram, Chennai 603108, Tamil Nadu
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/mamcjms.mamcjms_50_17

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How to cite this article:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. Necessity to Address Gender-Based Violence in the Conflict-Affected Regions of Myanmar: United Nations Population Fund. MAMC J Med Sci 2018;4:105-6

How to cite this URL:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. Necessity to Address Gender-Based Violence in the Conflict-Affected Regions of Myanmar: United Nations Population Fund. MAMC J Med Sci [serial online] 2018 [cited 2018 Dec 18];4:105-6. Available from: http://www.mamcjms.in/text.asp?2018/4/2/105/239996



Dear Editor,

Girls and women across the world have been exposed to violence or maltreatment, irrespective of the settings or any other social determinant.[1] In fact, the global estimates indicate that one out of three women have experienced some kind of physical or sexual violence at least once in their lifetime either from their partner or from some other men.[1] This is a serious public health concern, considering that any such violence is a direct violation of human rights, questions the position of women in society, and reiterates that the problem of gender inequality is widely prevalent.[1],[2]

As in different nations, even in Myanmar, the problem of gender-based violence is rampant and an unaddressed emergency.[1] It is extremely shocking that women and girls in the nation have been subjected to repeated incidents of harassments on the streets, domestic violence, and trafficking.[2],[3] The problem is further exacerbated in regions with an ongoing armed conflict, because it immensely enhances the vulnerability of girls to gender-based violence.[2] Nevertheless, it is important to understand that more often than not, most of such incidents go unreported, with young women being most vulnerable.[1],[2] Moreover, the findings of a survey revealed that 50% of the participants justified the practice of beating wife, and violence was accepted as an integral part of their life.[2]

To help women and girls living in the violence-affected parts and to remove the fear of violence, the United Nations Population Fund has established eight women’s and girls’ centers.[2] These centers are run by trained local women, and they play a crucial role in the provision of a wide range of services, namely counseling, legal aid, transport services to healthcare establishments, and supportive services for the violence survivors.[2],[3],[4] In addition, the staff assists women in reporting such incidents to the authorities and ensuring that the accused receive the due punishment.[2]

Moreover, it has been realized by the stakeholders from the center that the services should be expanded in communities, not only for assisting survivors, but also for averting violence.[2],[4] In fact, the staff members visit the affected areas and take measures to create awareness about the same, where survivors can seek help and nature of services offered by the centers.[2],[4] Owing to their persistent and dedicated efforts, these centers cover more than 35 displacement camps, and even awareness regarding the problem has improved in the region.[2] However, it is just the start and a long way is yet to be traveled; nevertheless, the workers are quite optimistic about their efforts.[2]

To conclude, women should not live in fear of violence, just because they are women; they possess all the rights to live in peace in their homes and in their nation. Thus, all efforts should be taken by the concerned stakeholders to ensure that such rights are not denied under any circumstance.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
  References Top

1.
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. Implementing universal minimal standards to counter the challenge of gender-based violence in emergencies. Ann Trop Med Public Health 2016;9:289–90.  Back to cited text no. 1
  [Full text]  
2.
UNFPA. Counsellors Reach Out to Kachin Communities to End Gender Violence; 2017. Available from: http://www.unfpa.org/news/counsellors-reach-out-kachin-communities-end-gender-violence. [Last accessed on 2017 Jul 25].  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
Zaw PP, Htoo TS, Pham NM, Eggleston K. Disparities in health and health care in Myanmar. Lancet 2015;386:2053.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. Extending care and support to the survivors of gender-based violence in Iraq during humanitarian emergencies. MAMC J Med Sci 2017;3:51–2.  Back to cited text no. 4
    




 

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