The United Nations in Suriname, under the leadership of UNFPA supports the Government in the development and implementation of a National Gender Strategy to combat domestic and sexual violence.
Gender-based violence (GBV) reflects and
reinforces inequities between men and women and compromises the health, dignity, security and autonomy of its victims. It encompasses a wide range of human rights violations, including sexual abuse of children, rape, domestic violence, sexual assault and harassment, trafficking of women and girls and several harmful traditional practices.
The scarce research in Suriname suggests that in 2010 at least 11.7 percent of Surinamese women self- reported having experienced domestic violence in their households.
To address this major issue, the Government of Suriname passed in 2009 the Wet bestrijding huiselijk geweld (Law to combat Domestic Violence) and activated the revision of the Penal Code on Moral Offences broadening opportunities for law enforcement agents to prosecute perpetrators.
However, there are still several gaps and challenges to be addressed such as an inadequate reporting system, the lack of possibilities for coaching and probation of perpetrators, lack of an integrated system of data collection and analysis, and the acceptance of GBV among many victims as a justified action.
In this context, the UN, under the leadership of UNFPA and the UN Gender Theme Group will support the Government of Suriname in the development and implementation of a National Gender Strategy to combat domestic and sexual violence.
Together with the Ministry of Justice and Police and the Ministry of Home Affairs, UNFPA will also support service providers to strengthen victims’ social and legal access to protection and those populations especially vulnerable to GBV, such as people with disabilities, adolescent mothers and Indigenous people.