2 Jun 2004

Commonwealth Parliamentarians call for more to be done to combat domestic violence

5:03 pm on 2 June 2004

Commonwealth Parliamentarians meeting in Fiji have called for Commonwealth countries to do more to combat domestic violence and abuse.

In a communique from the 7th Womens Ministers Meeting, the politicians who are members of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association, have outlined the key actions they say are needed to achieve gender equality and democracy.

They say Governments have a duty to ensure they have laws and services to prevent and deal with domestic violence and abuse.

The CPA says Governments should take steps to codify positive customary laws they wish to retain to ensure that all laws are in conformity with both international and domestic human rights obligations.

They also say called on member states to recognize that the elimination of poverty is the principal factor in the economic empowerment of women.

It says Governments must promote literacy and human rights awareness programmes among all sections of society and promote access to justice through the provision of legal aid services for all citizens.

And the CPA called for leaders to strengthen their will to support the Commonwealth's commitment to combat the spread of HIV/AIDS through health education and advocacy.