According to a study by the United Nations, it is estimated that nearly one in three women worldwide have experienced sexual harassment or physical sexual violence. In Thailand, from a population of 33 million females, there are a great number of women who are victims of sexual violence, in which only 13 percent have been willing to reveal themselves and go through the justice system. At the same time, this means that up to 87 percent of the women do not have the courage to file complaints. This is due to various reasons, such as embarrassment, cultural expectations and beliefs, economic factors and many other challenges. Additionally, it is also found that violence is often caused by the victim’s close ones, including family members.

Women should be able to live their lives with safety, free from harasses caused by sexual bias. Thailand Institute of Justice (TIJ) recognizes that sexual bias exists and that sexual violence not only affects victims but the society as a whole. The organization has been working to promote and empower women and girls through researches that can accurately analyze the problems and solutions, which in turn will be very helpful in driving future policies. This has led to cooperative efforts among local and international agencies, such as United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women), to carry out studies and activities revolved around ending violence against women and girls.

SpeakUp SpeakOut: SUSO

TIJ has been working with partners in organizing SpeakUp SpeakOut continuously since 2014, focusing the target audience on young people and the new generation. The activity seeks to encourage discussions and debates on gender equality issues through sharing knowledge and raising awareness about one’s roles in ending violence against women and girls. It strives to change the attitudes of the public towards violence against women—encouraging the justice system to be aware of the vulnerability of women victims and improve the work processes to protect and give emotional support to those that have entered the judiciary. Moreover, it supports the civil society to play a crucial role in promoting change so that women have the courage to access the justice system. This will eventually lead to a great decrease of violence against women and girls in the future.

“At present, awareness and attitudes from the society are barriers for victims of violence. They are afraid to reveal their stories and enter into the judicial process—they feel ashamed as though it is a social stigma. So, It is important that women dare to speak that they did not consent to be victimised. Because while victims still not courageous enough to speak up for themselves, it leads to a great obstacle to justness and this should not be allowed to continue to occur in the society. At the same time, we need to pick up speed in creating awareness in the society that violence is not a normal circumstance” says Kittipoom Nianhom, policy coordinator at TIJ.

On November 18, 2017, TIJ organized SpeakUp SpeakOut: Her Story Volume 2 at Thailand Institute of Justice, GPF Building, Wireless Road. In addition to exchanging opinions and debating about violence against women and girls, the event also highlighted the AI Workshop: Photograph Collage activity to raise awareness about the issue among university students. University students were encouraged to create and circulate their contents. Various forms of contents were created on different channels and platforms, leading to a strong and sustainable cooperation network that will help keep campaigns alive.

Facebook : SpeakUp SpeakOut