Advocacy for Inclusion works consistently with women with disabilities who are experiencing violence and have found the contexts in which these crimes occur are not recognised by the wider community as being forms of violence.
This week we have submitted our first submission for 2017 to the UN Special Rapporteur on the topic of Protection Orders and Shelters as ways of prevention and protection of violence against women. The issues covered in our *short* but loud publication highlight that women with disabilities are some of the most vulnerable members of the ACT community to all forms of violence and abuse.
They also experience more barriers than the rest of the community in accessing shelter and services when escaping domestic violence. Consequently, many are unable to realise their right to be free from violence and exploitation. The barriers include:
- Inadequate awareness and understanding among the community of the experience of violence against women with disabilities, including a lack of research and data collection;
- Denial among the community that the types of violence experienced by women with disabilities is actually violence;
- Lack of legislative recognition and protections afforded to women with disabilities as victims of violence;
- Lack of support, programs, resources and information appropriate and accessible for women with disabilities to help them be free from violence;
- Mishandling by disability accommodation providers of incidents of violence against women with disabilities, including lack of training among staff on how to respond to such incidents
The particular vulnerability of women with disabilities experiencing dependence on abusive care givers or partners, which we see time and time again, also depend heavily on supports provided within a violent residential care setting, fear of consequences of reporting incidents due to this power differential, and for many a conditioning to violent treatment over a lifetime.
Submission 1 completed for 2017. Cheers to more coming!
Check out our submission here in Word or PDF format: http://linkis.com/org/RGLwS
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