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International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women: Miss Peru 2018 pageant focuses on violence against women, not body stats of contestants
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International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women: Miss Peru 2018 pageant focuses on violence against women, not body stats of contestants

Almost every nation across the world, irrespective of their economic and social status, encounter the problem of incessant violence against women that is deep rooted in gender discrimination. The United Nations points out the pervasiveness of incidents of violence that women throughout the world face and the consequent effect of the resultant trauma on their minds.

While such incidents continue to deface and harm the idea of gender and social equality in every nation, women are now getting more vocal toward the issue. Recently, participants at the Miss Peru 2018 beauty pageant chose to inform people about the increasing prevalence of femicides and other gender-specific violence in their respective regions in their own way.

One of the aspirants identified walked to the stage and introduced herself as, “My name is Camila Canicoba and I represent the department of Lima. My measurements are: 2,202 cases of femicide reported in the last nine years in my country.” This was followed by another candidate Juana Acevedo revealing, “My measurements are: More than 70 percent of women in our country are victims of street harassment.” Similarly, all contenders at the beauty contest recited statistics about the ongoing crimes against women, including sexual assault and femicide.

While this manner of bringing to notice the issue of femicides may seem erratic to those used to witness street demonstrators crying aloud for change, the fact that such issues are being addressed at all levels shows the level of awareness that is being spread on all fronts. For the pageant participants, their aim was to bring home the fact how millions of women and girls all over the world are killed or dealt with mercilessly.

During the bathing suit segment of the competition, the contenders highlighted the need to respect women irrespective of what they wear. Jessica Newton, organizer of the pageant, said, “Everyone who does not denounce and everyone who does not do something to stop this is an accomplice. Women can walk out naked if they want to. Naked. It’s a personal decision. If I walk out in a bathing suit I am just as decent as a woman who walks out in an evening dress.”

Violence against women needs to be addressed at all levels

Indiscriminate killings of civilians is rampant in Peru with women being mostly victims of gender-based violent activities. The Human Rights Watch reveals roughly 96 reports of femicides in Peru in 2014 alone, while the number was 52 for the first seven months of 2015. Statistics indicating more than 700 cases of femicide in the country from 2009 to August 2015 are enough to narrate a grim picture.

Violence against women is in gross contravention of human rights and hence needs to be addressed. To highlight the issue of discrimination against women and its effects on their mental health, the United Nations observes the “International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women” every year on November 25. Violence is preventable and its universality can be curtailed by taking appropriate actions is the idea of the day.

Taking necessary steps toward recovery

In the United States too, gender discrimination is prevalent. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), about 23 million American women have become the victims of completed or attempted rape at some point in their life. Violent or abusive behavior against women can result in traumatic experiences. The trauma residential treatment for women at Sovereign Health of Arizona, one of the leading mental health care provider in the U.S., is tailored to the need of those suffering and looking for recovery. For more information about our women only trauma treatment centers, call our 24/7 helpline or chat with one of our online representatives.

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