World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 

US Must Do More to Protect Women from Domestic Violence, UN

New York, Aug 23 2011 1:10PM
The United States must do more to protect women from domestic violence after a regional body found it wanting in defending a battered woman and her three murdered children from her ex-husband, an independent United Nations human rights expert warned today.

“The US Government should reassess existing mechanisms for protecting victims and punishing offenders, and establish meaningful standards for enforcement of protection orders and impose consequences for a failure to enforce them,” the UN Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences, Rashida Manjoo, said.

The case at issue involves Jessica Lenahan, a victim of domestic violence along with her daughters Leslie, Katheryn and Rebecca Gonzales, ages seven, eight and 10, who obtained a restraining order against her ex-husband Simon from the Colorado state courts in 1999.

Not knowing where her daughters were, Ms. Lenahan contacted Castle Rock Police Department eight times on the evening of 22 June and the morning of 23 June 1999. That morning, Simon Gonzales drove his pick-up truck to the department and fired through the window. In an exchange of gunfire he was killed. The dead bodies of the three girls were found in his truck.

The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACR) found that the fragmented police response did not respect the terms of the restraining order, and that Colorado state did not duly investigate Ms. Lenahan’s complaints. It called on the US to conduct a full investigation into these systemic failures and reinforce through legislation the mandatory character of protection orders.

Ms. Manjoo noted that she conducted a fact-finding mission to the US earlier this year. “In my discussions with Government officials, victims, survivors, and advocates, including Jessica Lenahan, I found a lack of substantive protective legislation for domestic violence victims in the United States, as well as inadequate implementation of certain laws, policies and programs,” she said.

While landmark US legislation such as the Violence Against Women Act exists to address the high incidence of violence against women, “there is little in terms of legally binding federal provisions which provide substantive protection or prevention for acts of domestic violence against women,” she added.

Ms. Manjoo acts in an independent, unpaid capacity and reports to the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 


Covid-19: Vaccines Donated Next Year, ‘Too Late For Those Who Are Dying Today’

Millions more COVID vaccines need to be donated now to save lives and help the UN health agency reach the key global target of having 70 per cent of all national populations vaccinated, by the middle of 2022... More>>


UN News: Landmark G7 Agreement Pledges 870 Million COVID-19 Vaccine Doses, Half By End-2021

A senior UN official welcomed on Sunday, the Group of Seven (G7) leading industrialized nations’ commitment to immediately share at least 870 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines, supporting global access and helping to end the acute phase of the pandemic... More>>



OECD: G20 GDP Returns To Pre-pandemic Level In The First Quarter Of 2021, But With Large Differences Across Countries

Gross domestic product (GDP) of the G20 area returned to pre-pandemic level in the first quarter of 2021, growing by 0.8% compared with the fourth quarter of 2020. However, this figure conceals large differences across countries... More>>

Focus On: UN SDGs


COP26: Progress Made As May-June UN Climate Change Session Closes

The May-June Climate Change Session, the first to have been held virtually to prepare for the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) to be held at the end of the year in Glasgow, Scotland, closed today... More>>

UNFCCC: Halving Emissions By 2030 Is New Normal - Race To Zero Anniversary
Over 4,500 non-state actors from across the global economy have committed to halving emissions by 2030, joining the UN-backed Race to Zero campaign... More>>


UN: Tackling Biodiversity & Climate Crises Together And Their Combined Social Impacts

Unprecedented changes in climate and biodiversity, driven by human activities, have combined and increasingly threaten nature, human lives, livelihoods and well-being around the world... More>>