“Violence against women is widespread, taking on different forms,” said Dominique Damant, president and director of last week’s pioneering conference on women and violence. The international conference was the first of its kind and attracted representatives from more than 40 participating countries to Montreal Oct. 22 to 24.
In a brief interview with The Concordian, Damant talked about some of the issues addressed in the workshops, such as domestic violence, sexual violence and the forms it can take in different cultures, adding that not all violence against women is a result of spousal abuse.
Countless numbers of women are treated as second-class citizens throughout the world, subject to physical and psychological trauma, she went on to say.
At least one third of women in the world have been physically or sexually abused in their lives, according to United Nations estimates.
Perhaps a lesser known statistic is that violence is the main cause of death among women aged 16 to 44. This is just one statistic that the organizers behind last week’s conference on violence against women hope will change with more education and awareness.
Damant said that the main goals of the conference were to promote awareness and to encourage women who are victims of abuse and violence to speak out.
The conference organizers are also seeking to establish a system of networks with other research groups around the world. The research team for Les r