Monday, March 31, 2014

Many Voices, One Movement: Ending Sexual Violence in India

March 20th saw the beginning of Maitri's annual conference to end violence against women in India. It was a two day event filled with amazing experts and speakers on a wide range of issues all relating to violence against women. The keynote address was given by Kathleen Cravero, president of the Oak Foundation. Along with Ms. Cravero, we heard speeches from Tripti Tandon (Lawyers Collective) who spoke about the effects of criminalizing gay sex and Dr. Madhumita Puri (SFCD, Pragya) who shed light on the challenges facing persons with disabilities when trying to establish their sexuality. We also heard from Colleen Kovatch (George Washington University) who spoke about what happens once a survivor of sexual or domestic assault seeks medical attention.

These speakers, along with many other experts, educated the audience on topics including: Communication with Police and Medical Services; Violence against elderly women; Sexuality in persons with disabilities; LGBT experiences in India; Sexual harassment in the workplace; and, Sexual violence in conflict zones.

The event was a major success for Maitri as these issues were promoted on a wide scale to a broad audience. People were educated on areas of sexual violence that aren't always talked about and will be able to bring that awareness to their own lives, careers, and activism.


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