Abused No More Safeguarding Youth and Empowering Professionals

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Abused No More: Safeguarding Youth and Empowering Professionals “Legal literacy in relation to gender-based

Abused No More: Safeguarding Youth and Empowering Professionals “Legal literacy in relation to gender-based violence affecting young Black and minority ethnic women in the UK” The Programme is funded by Erasmus+ under 2015 -1 -UK 01 -KA 205 -01255

UK Study: Legal Literacy in Relation to Gender- based Violence Affecting Young BAME Women

UK Study: Legal Literacy in Relation to Gender- based Violence Affecting Young BAME Women The UK research examined the concept of Public Legal Education (PLE) as a potential empowerment tool for young Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) women affected or at risk to be exposed to gender based violence (GBV) and abuse with particular focus on the following forms of violence: ØFemale Genital Mutilation (FGM) ØHonour-based violence (HBV) ØForced marriage 2

Methodology 3

Methodology 3

Youth-led approach Young people from the IARS Independent Youth Advisory Board and the Women’s

Youth-led approach Young people from the IARS Independent Youth Advisory Board and the Women’s Advisory Board were involved in the fieldwork in order to ensure that the project is youth-led and youth informed; Youth led-approach: ØPromote inclusion and responsibility; encouraging participation and engagement of young people and those who are less likely to be involved in local decision-making. ØEncourage buy in approach in policies and practices; enabling young people to transform their experiences and needs into real change. ØBreak down negative stereotypes of young people and promote intergenerational learning and community cohesion. 4

 Findings from the Literature Review Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) FGM is the practice,

Findings from the Literature Review Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) FGM is the practice, traditional in some cultures, of partially or totally removing the external genitalia of girls and young women for non-medical reasons. Ø In the UK, social and political recognition of these facts is growing. Women who undergo FGM are usually young girls however the practice may be repeated on older women after they have given birth. Ø FGM is a serious form of violence against women and girls, an “extreme form of discrimination against women” (WHO) and a violation of Human Rights. Ø FGM can cause severe impact of untold physical and emotional trauma to young women's and girls from BAME backgrounds. Ø NCPCC responded to 1, 200 calls on FGM since June 2013 5

 Findings from the Literature Review Legislation Pertain to Gender-based Violence and Abuse: Female

Findings from the Literature Review Legislation Pertain to Gender-based Violence and Abuse: Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) ü In the UK FGM has been a specific criminal offence since 1985 under the Prohibition of Female Circumcision Act (the 1985 Act), incurring a penalty of up to 14 years in prison. Ø Until 2014, there have been no successful prosecutions in Britain. (Home Affairs Committee report, 2014). ü It is a criminal offence to take someone abroad for them to receive FGM. ü The Serious Crime Act 2015 also makes it mandatory for people working in the health and education sector to report incidence of FGM among under 18 s. This includes both when there is a verbal disclosure or when there are physical signs of FGM. A report should be made by the close of the next working day via the 101 police number. Additional Resources: More information about reporting duties can be found at https: //www. gov. uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/573782/FGM_Mandatory_R eporting_-_procedural_information_nov 16_FINAL. pdf 6

FGM: Support If you think someone is at risk of FGM you should contact

FGM: Support If you think someone is at risk of FGM you should contact the NSPCC on: NSPCC FGM Helpline Email: [email protected] org. uk Telephone: 0800 028 3550 From overseas: +44 (0)800 028 3550 If the risk is immanent then you should call the police More information about how to challenge FGM can be found here: http: //forwarduk. org. uk/ http: //www. dofeve. org/ https: //www. gov. uk/government/publications/be-the-mother-who-ends-fgm-poster Educational materials on FGM can be found here: https: //www. gov. uk/government/publications/fgm-suppport-materials https: //www. gov. uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/482799/6_1587_ HO_MT_Updates_to_the_FGM_The_Facts_WEB. pdf 7

 Findings from the Literature Review Honour based Violence: Honour based violence is a

Findings from the Literature Review Honour based Violence: Honour based violence is a violent crime or incident comminited within the context of the extended family to prevent or defend the honour of the family which is presumed to have been lost through the behaviour of the victim. Common triggers for HBV include: • Refusing an arranged marriage • Having a relationship outside the approved group • Loss of virginity • Pregnancy ü In the UK, It is estimated that there are 12 ”honour” killings per year but no data are available of number of people affected by other forms of “HBV”. ü Independent research by IKWRO found that over 2, 800 incidents were reported to the police in 2014. 8

 Findings from the Literature Review Legislation Pertain to Gender-based Violence and Abuse: Honour

Findings from the Literature Review Legislation Pertain to Gender-based Violence and Abuse: Honour based Violence: ü In the UK law, HBV does not designate a particular offence but it can be described as a collection of practices which are used to control behaviour within families to protect perceived cultural or religious beliefs and ”honour”. ü Crown Prosecution Service recognises HBV as a violation of human rights that may be a form of domestic and/or sexual violence. ü If someone commits Honour Based Violence they will usually be charged with a crime relating to their offence, such as GBH, attempted murder, kidnap etc. If there is an Honour Based Violence element of the crime being considered as an aggravating factor that increases the length of the sentence. ü Honour Based Violence is dealt with by the same unit as forced marriage. Additional Resources: Forced Marriage Unit – Tel. +44 (0) 20 7008 0151, email: [email protected] gov. uk, email for outreach work: [email protected] gov. uk, Facebook: Forced Marriage page, Twitter: @FMUnit 9

 Findings from the Literature Review Forced Marriage: ü Form of violence that may

Findings from the Literature Review Forced Marriage: ü Form of violence that may be also categorised as HBV when motivated by ideas similar to honour, defined by one or both people not consenting to the marriage where pressure or abused is used. ü Between January and December 2014, the Forced Marriage Unit (Joint Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Home Office unit) gave advice and support related to FM in 1267 cases. 79% of the involved victims were women of BAME backgrounds (Pakistan 38. 3%, India 7. 8% and Bangladesh 7. 1%). ü Migrant spouses are subject to physical and emotional abuse by both their spouses and their families (e. g preventing victims from contacting their family, withholding money, abusive family refused to apply for citizenship for the victim. ü Forced marriage impacts on young people’s educational and personal development and constitutes a form of child abused. 10

 Findings from the Literature Review Legislation Pertain to Gender-Based Violence and Abuse: Forced

Findings from the Literature Review Legislation Pertain to Gender-Based Violence and Abuse: Forced Marriage ü Under the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 makes it illegal to take someone oversees in order to force them to marry. ü A court can issue a Forced marriage protection order to protect someone from being forcibly married. ü Forcing someone to marry against their will is punishable by 7 years in prison. ü Breaching a forced marriage protection order can result in 5 years in prison. ü If the person of concern has been taken oversees, this unit will contact the relevant Embassy or High Commission who will intervene. Ø The government has set up a specialist Forced Marriage Unit to investigate incidents of forced marriage and also concerns that people have about someone at risk. Additional resources: They have also produced Forced Marriage: a survivors handbook https: //www. gov. uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/149854/FM_Survivors 6. pdf 11

Gender-based violence and Human Rights Ø Gender-based violence impairs or nullifies women’s enjoyment of

Gender-based violence and Human Rights Ø Gender-based violence impairs or nullifies women’s enjoyment of their human rights and freedoms including: ü The right to life. ü The right not to be subject to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. ü The right to equal protection according to humanitarian norms in time of international or internal armed conflict. ü The right to liberty and security of person. ü The right to equal protection under the law. ü The right to equality in the family. 12

Gender-based violence and Human Rights ü The right to the highest standard attainable of

Gender-based violence and Human Rights ü The right to the highest standard attainable of physical and mental health. ü The right to just and favourable conditions of work. Ø The UN Committee against Torture has further recognized that: “Being female intersects with other identifying characteristics or status of the person such as race, nationality, religion, sexual orientation, age, immigrant status etc. to determine the ways that women and girls are subject to or at risk of torture or ill-treatment and the consequences thereof. Ø The contexts in which females are at risk include deprivation of liberty, medical treatment, particularly involving reproductive decisions, and violence by private actors in communities and homes. 13

Migration and Violence against Women and Girls Asylum Seeking Women Ø 950, 469 arrivals

Migration and Violence against Women and Girls Asylum Seeking Women Ø 950, 469 arrivals of people fleeing conflicts and human rights violations recorded between January and November 2015. Ø 24% of those people were children and 16% were women. Ø According to UNHCR, in 2016, women and children now make up 60% of arrivals seeking sanctuary in Europe. Ø Adolescent girls constitute a particular vulnerable groups among female refugees and asylum seekers as over 20% reported being victims of some forms of sexual violence. 14

Migration and Violence against Women and Girls Ø In the UK, family migration comprises

Migration and Violence against Women and Girls Ø In the UK, family migration comprises around 17% of all immigration from outside the EEA and it is mainly young women of South Asian origin who join their UK-born spouses. Ø According to the UK immigration law, non EEA migrants who enter or stay in the UK as a result of marriage or partnership with an EEA national both parties must have lived in the UK for at least one year of the marriage. Ø In case that marriage deteriorates within the above time limits, women are not entitled to remain in the country unless they can prove that they have been victims of domestic violence/abuse. Additionally the victim should prove that she is working or she is self-sufficient. Ø Women come in the UK on spouse visas are excluded from mainstream services, job centres and classified as overseas students when accessing education. 15

Migration and Violence against Women and Girls This short documentary outlines some of the

Migration and Violence against Women and Girls This short documentary outlines some of the barriers that young BAME women are facing in search of legal support. The documentary was developed in the framework of the part of the three–year Comic Relief and Matrix Chambers funded project Abused No More: The Voices of Refugee and Asylum-seeking Women which is a user-led skills development and research programme focusing on the impact of gender-related violence on refugee and asylumseeking women (RASW). http: //www. iars. org. uk/content/online-training-gender 16

Barriers to help-seeking behaviour Cultural barriers ü Preserving identity Within BAME communities, young girls

Barriers to help-seeking behaviour Cultural barriers ü Preserving identity Within BAME communities, young girls and adolescents are often treated differently to their male siblings and pressurised to keep their original cultural identity. ü Privacy Experiences of violence go unreported because they are treated as private matters that should be dealt within the family or the extended cultural migrant community. ü Stigma Reluctance of being identified as victim of FGM. Separation or divorce women are ostracised and harassed by their communities. 17

What did the you people say? Ø Young women demonstrated a good level of

What did the you people say? Ø Young women demonstrated a good level of understanding of genderbased violence and abused, its legal context and services available to them. Ø However, the knowledge that young people had of legal rights was either mis-informed or very limited Ø Young people lack general awareness of any wider framework of civil legal rights Ø BAME young people is more likely to live isolated lives and they have limited knowledge of advice services. Ø Young people lack knowledge of where they could go for help, but also that they might not see typical help and advice service as viable options for them, Ø Young people may choose to seek help from particular individuals that they know and perhaps trust. (other young people, older siblings etc. ) 18

Case Studies FGM Fatima is 11 years old and lives in London. Her mother

Case Studies FGM Fatima is 11 years old and lives in London. Her mother told her that next summer she is going to their home country to become a woman like the rest of her female family. Her mother told her that she should just tell people she is going on holiday to visit relatives. Fatima has been taught about FGM at school and knows that it is bad and illegal, and that girls from her country are cut. Fatima knows that her mother would not do anything bad to her, but her mother also told her to lie to her friends and school and this makes her confused. Fatima knows that none of her friends at school are expected to undertake this kind of ceremony and she is scared and full of doubts, even though her mother said it is for her own good. As summer approaches Fatima becomes more and more worried, but she does not want to disappoint her family or get them in trouble. 19

Case Studies Forced marriage Krittika is a 16 year old girl who lives in

Case Studies Forced marriage Krittika is a 16 year old girl who lives in Birmingham. Her best friend, Gheeta, is funny and energetic and always knows how to make her laugh. Gheeta comes from an important family and has many sisters but Krittika has never met them because they are older and live in India with their husbands. Krittika notices that her best friend has stopped studying for her exams and seems suddenly unconcerned by the consequences of failing them. It seems that Gheeta has lost interest not only in school, but also in her social life. When Krittika asks her about her exams, Gheeta replies that she will soon leave for India to be a wife. Krittika is shocked because Gheeta is the same age as her and Krittika thinks she is too young to be a wife. Krittika also does not want her friend to leave and is worried that Gheeta seems unhappy but she does not know what to do. Gheeta has told Krittika not to tell anyone because that would get them in trouble and her parents will get really mad. 20

Case Studies Honour-based violence Bani is a 17 year old girl who lives in

Case Studies Honour-based violence Bani is a 17 year old girl who lives in Manchester. She is happy because she has finally started to look like a woman. Little by little she is getting used to more girly outfits and she starts wearing her hair down like the other girls in her class. She likes to go out on Saturdays with some friends to the local shopping mall where they hang around the shops and have fun trying on make-up and high heels. However, her aunt saw her with the other girls in town, in make-up and short skirt and told her parents about it. Her mother is very upset and her father says she has dishonoured her whole family. Her family has stopped her from seeing her friends and when Bani tries to complain her father beats her. Bani knows that her father is not allowed to hurt her like that, and she is upset and confused. She does not want to disappoint her par¬ents but she is angry because she just wanted to do what the other girls were doing. 21

Conclusions Ø Highlighted the role of schools and the community in creating awareness about

Conclusions Ø Highlighted the role of schools and the community in creating awareness about domestic violence, forced marriage, dress code and discrimination against women as wall as about women’s legal rights through campaigns and community consultations and training events e. g compulsory orientation programmes fro parents. Ø Favoured community-led approaches when young people have skills and confidence to resolve such issues within the family and the community. 22

Conclusions Ø Gender, culture, religion, class, education and family background can serve as both

Conclusions Ø Gender, culture, religion, class, education and family background can serve as both barriers and opportunities. Limited social networks, lack of information, and a variety of integration challenges are the main obstacles for newly arrived migrant women. Ø Better knowledge of rights and legal issues can be particularly empowering for young women of migrant background, enabling them to take more control over their lives, deal effectively with their problems, including gender-based violence and abuse and get involved in decision making on issues that affect them. 23

Conclusions Ø Lack of legal capability creates barriers to effective access to justice and

Conclusions Ø Lack of legal capability creates barriers to effective access to justice and leave women suffer in silence. Ø Content and delivery of PLE should be youth/user-led and match people’s demographic characteristics, backgrounds and experiences. Ø In the context of BAME communities PLE community based, systemic approaches are also favoured to match with individuals cultural values and characteristics. 24

Recommendations Ø Appropriate training and awareness services to migrant young people to improve their

Recommendations Ø Appropriate training and awareness services to migrant young people to improve their legal capabilities. Ø Age sensitivity of strategies and services should be ensured through appointment of advocates/ case workers, counsellors and outreach workers of different age who could engage in and understand young survivors. Ø Specialist information centres set up to provide information in relation to legal support, counselling and services to victims of VAWG, including FGM and free helplines staffed by specialists on different forms of GBV. Ø Enhancement and recognition of the role of community centres to provide advice and support. 25

Recommendations Ø Statutory investment in community initiatives offering innovative integration programmes for young migrant

Recommendations Ø Statutory investment in community initiatives offering innovative integration programmes for young migrant women, including provision of public legal education. Ø Broader multilevel cooperation between local authorities and community based organisation is needed to create safe spaces for women. Ø Any support/material in the form of empowerment must be tailored to the target’s real lives and challenges. Bottom-up, youth-led models of empowerment are more likely to bring positive outcomes for young vulnerable people. 26

IARS contact details The IARS International Institute 14 Dock Offices Surrey Quays Road London

IARS contact details The IARS International Institute 14 Dock Offices Surrey Quays Road London SE 16 2 XU United Kingdom www. iars. org. uk [email protected] org. uk Tel. (0044) 207 064 4380 27