The Australian Government recognises that reducing violence against women is crucial to achieving equality between men and women and delivering good development outcomes. The government is committed to reducing violence against women in Australia as well as contributing to international efforts to end violence against women globally and in our region. Working in partnership with others, through bilateral, regional and multi-lateral efforts, is central to this.
Australia is working with political leaders and international organisations to end violence against women. For example, at the Pacific Islands Forum in August 2009, the Australian Prime Minister joined leaders of the Pacific Islands to commit to eradicate sexual and gender-based violence. This commitment is being used by women's organisations across the Pacific to advocate with governments for increased support to end violence against women. Australia has also provided financial support for the work of the Asian Forum of Parliamentarians on Population and Development to address violence against women.
Australia is working with United Nations (UN) agencies at a global level to end violence against women as part of the Partnership Frameworks signed with UN Women and UNFPA. Australia also provides targeted funding to support the work of the UN to end violence against women. For example, AusAID is working with UNFPA in the Pacific to conduct surveys of the prevalence of violence against women, and to improve health sector responses to violence against women. Australia supports the UN Women Pacific Fund to End Violence Against Women which provides capacity building and small grants to organisations working to end violence against women. Australia also contributes to the global UN Trust Fund to End Violence Against Women and is supporting the joint UN program, Partners for Prevention, in its work with men across Asia and the Pacific to end violence against women.
Australia is a supporter of United Nations Security Council resolutions on women, peace and security (UNSCR 1325, 1889, 1820 and 1888). AusAID is providing practical support to address issues affecting women and men during and after conflict. This includes support for women's organisations to ensure that women participate in peace processes; that their need for protection is met; and that gender perspectives are included in peacekeeping operations.
In 2010-11, Australia will provide A$4.3 billion in development assistance, most of which will be managed by the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID). The Australian aid program focuses on the Asia-Pacific region and addresses conditions such as poverty, underemployment and unemployment, corruption, gender inequality, discriminatory cultural norms, lack of access to education, and social and political instability through the eight Millennium Development Goals. Progress towards these goals will reduce the vulnerability of people and communities to trafficking and other forms of exploitation, and create better livelihood options, increase education and awareness, empower women and promote the rights of children.
AusAID also funds a number of specific anti-trafficking activities to change the conditions that enable trafficking and exploitation and to assist victims. These include:
- Asia Regional Trafficking in Persons (ARTIP) Project ($21 million; 2006-11). ARTIP aims to strengthen the criminal justice system response to trafficking and to improve
cross-border cooperation in South-East Asia, primarily through training and capacity building for law enforcement officers, judges and prosecutors, and through improving anti-people trafficking policy, legal, research and outreach capability in the region. ARTIP partner countries are Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam. ARTIP also works closely with ASEAN.
- Tripartite Action to Protect Migrants in the Greater Mekong Sub-region from Labour Exploitation (TRIANGLE) ($10.5 million; 2010-14). This five-year project is implemented by the ILO and will reduce the exploitation of vulnerable migrant workers and their families in the Greater Mekong Sub-region: Cambodia, southern China, Lao PDR, Thailand and Vietnam. The project will strengthen recruitment and labour protection policies, promote legal and safe migration, increase community awareness of exploitative practices, and provide better support services for migrant workers.
- Project Childhood ($7.5 million; 2010-14). AusAID developed this five-year program to extend beyond the small-scale awareness-raising and training projects on child sex tourism funded since 1994. The program is linked to ASEAN's five-year Transition Plan for a Sustainable Response to Child Sex Tourism in South-East Asia, funded by AusAID. Project Childhood consists of prevention and protection pillars to help combat child sex tourism in the Mekong Sub-region.
- MTV EXIT Campaign. In 2010, AusAID partnered with USAID to support MTV's End Trafficking and Exploitation (EXIT) Campaign in Vietnam and Indonesia. It provided $800,000 to support concerts, television and online documentaries and public relations activities to raise awareness of people trafficking among young people.
- NGO activities. AusAID supports a range of NGO projects that aim to prevent trafficking, assist victims and improve child protection. This includes a long-term partnership agreement with UNICEF (2008-15) and support for Save the Children and Child Fund projects promoting child rights, protection and advocacy. Other projects include World Vision's Assistance, Support and Protection for Migrant and Trafficked Women and Children project in Burma-Thailand border areas, and the Mekong Delta Regional Trafficking Strategy 2, which focuses on child trafficking.
Other examples of porjects/programmes supported by AusAID are:
UN agencies at a global level to end violence against women as part of the Partnership Frameworks signed with UN Women ($14.5 million over two years from 2010-11 to 2011‑12) and UNFPA ($42.5 million over four years from 2008-09 to 2011-12);
- UN agencies at a global level to end violence against women as part of the Partnership Frameworks signed with UN Women ($14.5 million over two years from 2010-11 to 2011‑12) and UNFPA ($42.5 million over four years from 2008-09 to 2011-12);
- The Fiji Women's Crisis Centre to meet immediate needs of survivors of violence in Fiji and advocate for women's rights in Pacific countries. In 2009 these services were provided to 3734 women subjected to violence in Fiji ($5.3 million over six years beginning in 2009-10);
- Safe shelters for women affected by violence in Papua New Guinea such as Haus Ruth in Port Moresby, and better access to justice and legal services for women across Papua New Guinea (estimated $8.3 million in 2009-10 spent on activities to respond to violence against women in Papua New Guinea);
- The Vanuatu Women's Centre to work with women who are abused and to address the root causes of domestic violence ($3.7 million over five years beginning in 2007-08);
- The East Timorese Association of Men Against Violence community-based education program to raise awareness and change the behaviour of men and youth towards women (US$117,535 in 2010-2011);
- The UN Women Pacific Fund to End Violence Against Women which provides capacity building and small grants to organisations working to end violence against women ($1.6million since 2008-09);
- Partners for Prevention in its work with men across Asia and the Pacific to end violence against women. This is a joint United Nations program that involves governments, civil society and United Nations agencies working together to change attitudes and prevent violence ($1 million over four years commencing in 2010-11).
Additional examples of Australia's contribution to international efforts to end violence against women can be found at:
For more information on the activities undertaken by AusAID, please click on the following site:
Source of Information
Response of the Government of Australia to the questionnaire on violence against women 2011