Why hasn't UK signed the Convention to stop violence against women? | 30 years of Amnesty trade union solidarity | 25 Nov 2011 | Amnesty International UK

Why hasn't UK signed the Convention to stop violence against women?

Today, 25 November, has been the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and it seems a fitting moment to ask the government to reaffirm its commitment to eradicating violence against women with a very tangible, and rather overdue, step.

We’ve chosen today to start a petition urging the government to sign up to the Council of Europe convention on combating and preventing violence against women and domestic violence (the convention is known as CAHVIO). Please sign our petition and demand that the government acts now on violence against women and girls, both in the UK and overseas.

Amnesty International have called on all the Council of Europe member states who haven't yet signed the Convention to do the same.

Earlier this month the UK assumed the Chair of the Council of Europe. So we have a leadership role. Presumably we should be leading by example. That's why we're asking Minister for Women Lynne Featherstone to sign up. Shamefully, seventeen member states signed ahead of us already.

The purposes of the Convention are set out in my Touchstone blog and on the Council of Europe website. There's nothing that could excuse the Government's failure to sign the Convention. By not signing it, the UK government is sending a signal that violence against women – nationally and internationally – is not a priority.

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