29.03.2013 - UNESCO Office in Amman

Women with disabilities experience more violence than men with disabilities


In line with this year’s International Women’s Day theme of ‘A promise is a promise: Time for action to end violence against women’, the UNESCO Amman Office in cooperation with the I am a Human Society organized a seminar on ending violence against women with disabilities.

Attending the event were sixty representatives from the Higher Council for Persons with Disabilities Affairs, experts in women and disabilities from public and private universities and civil society organizations working for the disabled.

“To empower women and ensure equality, we must challenge every form of violence every time it occurs” stated Dr Anna Paolini, Head of UNESCO Amman Office and UNESCO Representative to Jordan. “In particular, addressing the issue of violence against women with disabilities will require the involvement of segments of the community that have not traditionally been active in such efforts,” Dr. Paolini added.

“The cry of women with disabilities is often not heard because of the shame and embarrassment that disabilities are still associated with in the family and community, as well as due to the poverty and ignorance that plagues such discrimination” said Ms. Asia Yaghi, President of I am Human Society.

According to a Special Report by the US Department of Justice in 2007, the rate of violent crime against people with disabilities was 1.5 times that of people without disabilities; for sexual assault and rape, the rate was more than twice that of persons without disabilities. Females had a higher victimization rate than males among persons with disabilities.

During the event, presentations were made by:

  • Ms. Shereen Hussein from I am a Human Society on the working paper ‘The cry of women with disabilities against violence’, which discussed the types of violence against women with disabilities;
  • Professor Inaam Al Asha from the Jordanian Women's Solidarity Institute, who discussed a working paper entitled "Importance of the role of men in ending violence against women with disabilities";
  • Raja Al Misabi , UN Good will Ambassador from Yemen who discussed through Skype her personal success story in achieving her current position; and
  • Barbra Bromel, Director of the Institute of Women with Disabilities who also shared her personal success story.

The event concluded with an open discussion on the presentations and formulation of a number of recommendations to be implemented by respective parties.

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