19.09.2013 - UNESCO Havana/Portal of Culture of Latin America and the Caribbean

United Nations system in Cuba promotes discussion on gender-based violence at Radio and TV Festival

© OCR/SNU. M. Muñoz.Dr Isabel Moya giving her lecture.

As part of the recently concluded Radio and Television Festival Cuba 2013, a panel was conducted entitled "Gender-based violence against women and girls in the media", organised by the Office of the Resident Coordinator of the United Nations System in Cuba, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), and UNESCO in the framework of the campaign "UNITE to put an end to violence against women and girls" led by the U.N. Secretary-General.

The activity counted with the presence of Ms Laura Melo, UN System Resident Coordinator ad interim in Cuba and representative of the World Food Programme (WFP), Mr Theodor Friedrich, FAO Representative in Cuba, as well as specialists from the Gender and Communication areas of other UN System agencies in the Caribbean nation. UNESCO was represented by Tatiana Villegas, Programme Specialist and Gender Focal Point at the Organisation's Regional Office for Culture, based in Havana.

In her words of welcome, Laura Melo highlighted how the UNITE Campaign calls on governments, civil society, the private sector, the media and the entire United Nations system to promote actions at all levels to fight violence against women. In this framework, the United Nations system has had the opportunity to accompany a group of public institutions and organisations, as well as non-governmental networks, in their efforts to prevent and address violence against women and girls. She further noted that as part of this strategy, mass media are identified as an indispensable alliance in order to visualise the problem, raise awareness and promote changes in patriarchal culture, the underlying cause of gender-based violence.

The panel was moderated by Dr. Isabel Moya, director of Women Publishing House and head of the Gender Chair at the José Martí International Institute of Journalism, and also counted with the participation of Dánae C. Diéguez, Assistant Professor at the School of Audiovisual Communications Media Art of the University of the Arts and coordinator of the Gender and Culture Group of the Union of Writers and Artists of Cuba (UNEAC), known as "Looking from the Point of View of Suspicion", and of Magda González Grau, TV programme director.

In a lecture preceded by the presentations made by panellists representing the United Nations system, Dr Moya gave an overview of the mass media, both at the global and national level, and highlighted the valuable contribution they could make to the gender approach.

In a paper entitled "A closer look at the study of gender on Cuban Television", Prof Dánae C. Diéguez presented the preliminary results of monitoring five national TV channels, the channel of the Cuban capital, and the programmes from teleSUR (The New Television Station of the South) broadcast on the island.

Magda González Grau, in turn, presented the initiative to create a work group for the Gender theme within the programming divisions of Cuban radio and television, aimed at ensuring an ongoing and systematic relationship with UNEAC's recently created Culture and Gender Commission.

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