Womens Justice Center

The Liberation of Women's Energy
Will Change the World. *

La liberación de la energía de la mujer cambiará el mundo

o provide advocacy, free of charge, for victims of rape, domestic violence, and child abuse, particularly in the Latina and other under served communities of Sonoma County. To provide advocacy training and community education. To promote more women and minorities in our law enforcement agencies. To commit to equal justice for all women and girls.

rindar una defensa gratuita a víctimas de violación, violencia doméstica y abuso infantil, particularmente en las comunidades hispanas y otras que no son atendidas adecuadamente en el condado de Sonoma. Proveer capacitación en defensa pública y educación comunitaria. Incrementar el número de mujeres y personas pertenecientes a minorías en nuestras agencias de aplicación de justicia. Comprometernos con la justicia igualitaria para todas las mujeres y las niñas.

News Round-up ~ Resumen de noticias


LA JONQUERA, Spain — She had expected a job in a hotel. But when Valentina arrived here two months ago from Romania, the man who helped her get here — a man she had considered her boyfriend — made it clear that the job was on the side of the road.

He threatened to beat her and to kill her children if she did not comply. And so she stood near a roundabout recently, her hair in a greasy ponytail, charging $40 for intercourse, $27 for oral sex.
“For me, life is finished,” she said later that evening, tears running down her face. “I will never forget that I have done this.”


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24hr TAALK-A-THON to End Child Sexual Abuse
April 29- 30, 2011

** Listen On Demand Now **
(Press the Play Button Next to Each Segment)

We will host a 24 hour internet radio show with guest speakers each hour covering a variety of topics related to child sexual abuse awareness, prevention and support. Hear 60+ speakers from around the world with the brightest minds and the biggest hearts. It's an event you won't want to miss!
Join us in breaking the silence around the world!

Scroll Down Linked Page for Audio Links

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from California Latinas for Reproductive Justice

The State Legislature is considering two bills that would have tremendous impacts on women and families!  

We need your support to advance two bills that would greatly improve women's access to health care and help safeguard children and protect parental rights! SB 1338 (Kehoe) and AB 2015 (Mitchell) have committee hearings on April 16 and 17, respectively. CLRJ is co-sponsoring both bills as they are stepping stones towards advancing reproductive justice for Latinas and their families. Please send in your letters of support TODAY to make sure the health and rights of women and families are secure.


AB 2015 (Mitchell): Calls for Kids

Hearing Date: Public Safety Committee 4/17/12

Ensures that custodial parents, regardless of immigration status or language, can arrange for the care of their children at the time of arrest and retain some contact with their child's caregiver. 


CLRJ is pleased to co-sponsor AB 2015 because we recognize the issue of parents' rights to make decisions about their own children as a reproductive justice issue. The coordination of efforts to keep families together when a parent is detained or deported is an affirmative strategy to address this growing problem that deeply impacts California's communities.

Download and send in a letter of support to Assemblymember Holly Mitchell!

SB 1338 (Kehoe): Safe and Early Access

Hearing Date: Senate Public Safety 4/16/12

Ensures that women can receive comprehensive reproductive health care from local providers they know and trust by allowing Nurse Practitioners (NPs), Certified Nurse Midwives (CNMs) and Physician Assistants (PA's) to provide early safe abortion care under the terms of their licenses. 


CLRJ is pleased to co-sponsor SB 1338 because access to comprehensive reproductive health care is especially important in the Latina/o community, which has among the lowest access to reproductive health services and experiences higher reproductive health disparities. SB 1501 will provide much-needed equity in access to comprehensive reproductive health care for all women, particularly Latinas and other low-income women of color experiencing limited access to health care.

Download and send in a letter of support to Senator Kehoe!


Please see fact sheets for both bills below for more information. 


In solidarity,


Marisol & Myra

CLRJ's Policy Team 


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from intlawgrrls Blog
In a groundbreaking effort to “Confront Complexity” (theme of this year’s American Society of International Law Annual Meeting), the International Disability Rights Interest Group(IDRIG) sponsored an engaging and informative roundtable on violence against women with disabilities on Thursday, 29 March 2012. Titled “Forgotten Sisters: Violence against Women With Disabilities, Human Rights, and Complex Identity Status,” the gathering was co-organized by IDRIG co-chairs Stephanie Ortoleva (pictured at far right) and yours truly, IntLawGrrl Hope Lewis.Roundtable speakers shared cutting-edge work on legal issues including international human rights treaty implementation and interpretation, access to justice, domestic and local implementation and civil society advocacy, state due diligence obligations in light of violence and discrimination committed by non-state actors, and post-conflict human rights strategies.
Excerpt.... Participatory Approaches

Legal and policy strategies aimed at ending violence against women with disabilities must adopt a “nothing about us, without us” approach as was successfully employed during the drafting and negotiation of the CRPD.
Women with disabilities must themselves be key decision-makers in efforts to identify priority concerns and legal responses.

Popular and Legal Education
There is a need for further popular, police, and judicial training that builds specific cultural awareness and legal knowledge about the rights of women with disabilities.Without such efforts, further elaboration of international, regional, and domestic legal standards may fail women with disabilities at grassroots levels.

Rights-based Approaches
States parties and civil society advocates must move beyond the old “charitable” and “medical”models of disability and embrace a social model of disability. Such a model focuses instead on harmful social perceptions and structures that advocates can help responsible actors to reconceive (e.g., in the practical context of “universal design”).

Lessons from the Inter-American System ... Continues...

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Tell McGraw-Hill Publishers: Slavery Did Not End in 1865, Include Modern-Day Slavery in Textbooks.

Why This Is Important

Students throughout the United States are still being taught that slavery ended in 1865, and McGraw-Hill Publishing Company produces textbooks and online educational materials that contain this false information (see examples linked below). While the Emancipation Proclamation was in fact a notable act of anti-slavery, the year of 1865 did not actually mark the end of slavery. Also contemporarily referred to as modern slavery or human trafficking, slavery continues to be pervasive across the United States and internationally, and it exists today just as it did centuries ago. In fact, according to the United States Department of State Trafficking in Persons Report (2011) and leading NGOs represented on End Slavery Now, the current number of slaves can exceed upwards of 25 million. Thus, elementary and high school students are being taught erroneous information regarding a significant topic that is still alive in the present day. 

As a leading publishing company of educational materials, McGraw-Hill must diligently make alterations to current and imminent textbook publications so that our future generations can be educated on accuratehistorical and modern-day events. Slavery is not just a topic of the past, nor has it ever truly been abolished; slavery still exists and must be taught as such. Education is the first step to eradicating slavery once and for all.


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Por desgracia, cuando un niño está sufriendo abusos por parte de un familiar hay personas que tienden a desviar la vista hacia otro lado, no hacen nada, no dicen nada, definitivamente no está ocurriendo y ese niño se ve sólo ante una situación dolorosa que no puede comprender.

Son miles de preguntas las que pueden asaltarle, tal vez lo que está viviendo seanormal porque si nadie hace nada es que es así o a lo mejor, es que él se merece que le hagan daño porque aunque no sepa porqué se ha portado mal, o quién sabe, a lo mejor el que está haciendo algo mal es él porque no disfruta con lo que le están haciendo cuando ¿debería hacerlo?


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April 11, 2012—Join an Online Discussion
Analyzing the Impact of Sexual Assault
Protection Orders

On April 11, 2012, at 2 p.m. (eastern time), in commemoration of National Sexual Assault Awareness Month, the Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) will present a Web Forum discussion with Laura Jones, J.D., and DeAnn Yamamoto on best practices for analyzing the impact of sexual assault protection orders. Ms. Jones is the CourtWatch Manager at the King County Sexual Assault Resource Center (KCSARC) in Washington state, where she networks with community and professional stakeholders in the justice system and analyzes the data collected by CourtWatch volunteers. CourtWatch is a court-monitoring program established to hold the justice system accountable for its handling of sexual assault and child abuse cases and to create a more informed public. Ms. Jones also published a report entitled Analyzing the Impact and Application of the Sexual Assault Protection Order in King CountyMs. Yamamoto is the Deputy Executive Director of KCSARC, where she oversees the Client Services Team, comprising clinical therapists, legal advocates, and crisis counselors. She also is responsible for overall staff development and organizational design. Ms. Yamamoto has more than 30 years of experience creating and implementing effective services for physical and sexual assault victims. She has been with KCSARC since 1984 and has written a series of publications for parents and sexual assault victims.

Visit the OVC Web Forum now to submit questions for Ms. Jones and Ms. Yamamoto and return on April 11 at 2 p.m. (eastern time) for the live discussion. Learn how to participate beforehand so you are ready for the discussion.

How to Participate

OVC Forum


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Longitudinal study finds babies under 2 may be most at risk for long-term cognitive deficits

BOSTONApril 3, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Children exposed early in life to interpersonal trauma (maltreatment or witnessing partner violence against their mothers) have lower IQ-related scores at 2, 5 and 8 years of age, find researchers at  Boston Children's Hospital and the Institute of Child Development at the University of Minnesota. This deficit was highly significant after controlling for other strong predictors like socioeconomic status, the mother's IQ, birth weight, birth complications and the amount of cognitive stimulation received at home.

On average, children with such trauma exposure had cognitive scores that were about half a standard deviation lower than those not exposed – the equivalent of 7 IQ points. This effect is at least as great if not greater than the effects noted for lead exposure, says study leader Michelle Bosquet Enlow, PhD, in the Department of Psychiatry at Boston Children's Hospital.

"You can think of trauma as an environmental toxin similar to lead," Bosquet Enlow says. "Just as we need to eradicate lead exposure to protect IQ, we hope our results will spur efforts to identify families at risk and intervene to prevent this from happening. Maltreatment and violence exposure tend to be seen as criminal justice or social service issues, but they're also important public health issues."

The most significant and enduring cognitive deficits were in children exposed to trauma between birth and 2 years of age. "This is a very vulnerable time, when brain development is most rapid and thus particularly susceptible to the effects of environmental exposures, like violence. This is also the time when children are very needy and most likely to be abused," says Bosquet Enlow. "Those first two years have to be looked at very carefully."


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A federal district court judge ruled yesterday that the military has been too slow to respond to a Freedom of Information Act request for its sexual violence data. 

There are an estimated 19,000 reports (PDF) of sexual assault in the military each year — a number that is rapidly rising — and both the Service Women’s Action Network (SWAN) and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) are seeking more information on the problem, arguing that the only way to begin to solve it is to know all the facts. 
In a press release, the ACLU outlined one of the military’s reasons for not responding, and U.S. District Court Judge Mark R. Kravitz’s reaction: In one example, the Army Crime Records Center claimed it couldn’t provide records about “sexual assault” because its records are organized by specific criminal offenses, not under the generic heading of “sexual assault.” 
“’Sexual assault’ is easily read as encompassing rape and other non-consensual sexual crimes defined in the Army’s offense codes,” Kravitz wrote in his order.“The fact that the agency was unwilling to read the Plaintiffs’ request liberally to include such terms seems to be almost willful blindness.”


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Las ilustradoras Karina Cocq, Sol Díaz y Daniela Somoza son las responsables de esta iniciativa que habla de las mujeres no tradicionales, que rompen moldes

InternacionalCultura y arteExposicionesMujeres creadorasSantiago de Chile, Miércoles 4 de abril de 2012, por Tamara Vidaurrázaga Aránguiz

Chile, 04 abr. 12. AmecoPress/SEMlac.- Mujeres paridas por lobas, una indígena cargando sus pesares en un aguayo (lienzo) amarrado a la espalda o una inocente blancanieves sosteniendo una roja manzana entre las manos, salen de los pinceles de tres jóvenes ilustradoras que se presentan en la exposición "Señoritas salvajes" que se exhibirá durante marzo y abril en la Biblioteca de la capital chilena.

Karina Cocq, Sol Díaz y Daniela Somoza son las realizadoras de esta iniciativa que habla de las mujeres no tradicionales, que rompen moldes y dejan escapar esa otra que hay en cada una luchando por expresarse.


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Joe Arpaio Bad Faith Justice Department


PHOENIX (Associated Press) — The U.S. Justice Department said Tuesday that America's self-proclaimed toughest sheriff was negotiating in bad faith, jeopardizing efforts to settle civil rights charges stemming from allegations of racial profiling against Latinos.

Department of Justice officials told a lawyer for Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio that the lawman's refusal of a court-appointed monitor was a deal-breaker that would end settlement negotiations and result in a federal lawsuit.

The Justice Department says Arpaio previously agreed to outside supervision and tried to change the terms of the deal in a letter Tuesday.

"We believe that you are wasting time and not negotiating in good faith," wrote Roy A



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from Women's Law Project

Honks. Wolf whistles. Shouting. Unsolicited remarks, positive or negative, about one’s clothing or appearance from strangers. Unwanted conversations when there’s no escape route or polite way of excusing oneself. Unwanted touching and solicitations for sex.
All of the above fall under the umbrella of “street harassment” and according toa study of 811 women, one in four girls experience some form of this by the time they are twelve years old, and almost 90% by the time they are nineteen.
The thought of a twelve-year-old girl being whistled and leered at by grown men is disturbing on its own, but research is beginning to show that the really troubling threat of street harassment isn’t even the way it humiliates women and makes them fearful in public: the real threat is that this fear, and the elaborate survival-style measures many women take to avoid it, limits girls’ and women’s mobility and their access to education and employment on a wide scale.  According to StopStreetHarassment.org, 50% of women report altering their traveling routes to avoid persistent harassment; 45% avoid being out after dark, and 40% avoid going out unaccompanied.

Continues with links to full study and resources...


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California Bar Journal

By Diane Curtis

Native American Women ilustrationDomestic violence and sexual assaults are complicated crimes in any setting, but in California Indian Country, the opportunities for confusion, errors and misunderstanding in reporting, prosecuting and counseling are even greater.

Jurisdiction isn’t always clear. Distrust of law enforcement outside the reservation is widespread. Tribal police and courts sometimes lack the authority they need to see that justice is done. Data is not easily exchanged between different law enforcement groups. Many of the crimes are committed in very isolated areas difficult to reach by non-tribal police or sheriff’s deputies.


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A 2008 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report on health and violence found that 39 percent of Native women reported that they were victims of intimate partner violence some time in their lives. To address this problem, the Family Violence Prevention Fund (FVPF) worked with more than 100 Indian, Tribal and Urban health care facilities as well as domestic violence (DV) advocacy programs across the United States to improve the health system response to domestic violence. This report explains how the work they accomplished can be replicated.

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Announcing the release of DAWN's FREE ebook "Women Transforming Peace Activism in a Fierce New World - South and Southeast Asia" edited by Kumudini Samuel

In 2009, DAWN began a process of exploring women’s activism and agency in times of conflict and transition through a series of self-reflective case studies written by feminists in Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Nepal and India. The project was conceptualized initially within DAWN under its Political Restructuring and Social Transformation (PRST) Research Program and further developed with the generous support of several women collaborators of our network from the South and Southeast Asian regions.

Scroll down linked page to download ebook



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De acuerdo con un informe del registro que depende del Ministerio de Justicia, la gran mayoría de los chicos extraviados son adolescentes que se fueron de su casa por situaciones de maltrato. Las mujeres duplican en cantidad a los varones.


 Por Eduardo Videla

Durante 2011, se registraron 3398 denuncias de chicos y chicas extraviados en todo el país. La gran mayoría son adolescentes y preadolescentes de 12 a 17 años que abandonaron voluntariamente su casa o el lugar donde se alojaban. Y la cantidad de niñas duplica a la de varones. Los datos corresponden al Registro Nacional de Información de Personas Menores Extraviadas (Rnipme). La intervención del Equipo Social del Registro, en 241 de esos casos permitió llegar a la conclusión de que la gran mayoría de los abandonos de hogar son consecuencia de maltrato intrafamiliar. “Nadie quiere vivir donde le pegan”, dijo a Página/12 Cristina Fernández, titular del registro que depende del Ministerio de Justicia de la Nación.



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Dentro de la campaña de Amnistía Internacional "Exigimos Justicia Ya"

Impunidad de la violencia sexual en Colombia y El Congo

Denuncia y concienciación sobre las situaciones de violencia que sufren las mujeres en estos países


Madrid, 26 mar. 12. AmecoPress.- Dos países tan distantes como Colombia y la República Democrática del Congo (RDC) comparten sin embargo un problema endémico: la violencia sexual contra las mujeres en el marco de un largo conflicto armado. Y la misma respuesta de la justicia: darles la espalda a las víctimas.

Para denunciar cómo estas situaciones de conflicto afectan a las mujeres y niñas de manera especial y la impunidad que envuelve estas violaciones de Derechos Humanos, Amnistía Internacional desarrolla la campaña Justicia para las víctimas de violencia sexual.


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Project creators
About the project
Cause of Death: Woman is an investigative report on violence against women. One in three women around the world is subjected to physical, sexual or some other form of violence during her lifetime. Between 2010 and 2012 we examined the situation in ten countries. In each country we met women who had survived violence and people working for change. With the help of relatives we were also able to tell the story of a woman who had been killed. You can see the result at www.causeofdeathwoman.com, where you will find 150 articles from all over the world. You can also download course material and a Do-It-Yourself exhibition.

The project is the work of Karin Alfredsson, Linda Forsell and Kerstin Weigl together with the Swedish Association of Women’s Shelters and Young Women’s Empowerment Centres, SKR.  Funding was received from, among others, the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) and the Sigrid Rausing Trust.

The countries which are included in the project are the US, South Africa, Egypt, Sweden, Pakistan, Mexico, Brazil, Congo, Spain and Russia.

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Cordoba, Spain

It is nine o’clock in the morning and police officer Adolfina Prieto smiles apologetically: unfortunately her room is occupied. Inside is a woman who was almost strangled last night.

Who: Adolfina Prieto
What: Heads LIBRA, the special police unit which combats violence against women and also offers survival courses to women who have lived with a dangerous man.

See Interview

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(As posted by intlawgrrls)

The Center for Constitutional Rights in New York City is seeking applications from experienced lawyers for the position of Staff Attorney, International Human Rights.CCR's human rights docket date to the landmark Alien Tort Statute case of Filártiga v. Peña-Irala (1980), and encompasses an array of cases in U.S. and other courts. As detailed here, current matters include several cases dealing with post-9/11 accountability, as well as a request that the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court investigate Vatican officials.

The Staff Attorney will: litigate existing international human rights cases in U.S. courts and international fora; develop new litigation projects in areas such as gender justice and sexual rights, the promotion and protection of economic, social and cultural rights, corporate accountability, and militarism; and help with CCR's education, advocacy, and media work.
Deadline to apply is April 11, 2012. Details on CCR, job duties, and required qualifications here.

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Future Directions for Research and Reform

  1. Kimberly A. Lonsway1
  2. Joanne Archambault2
  1. 1End Violence Against Women International (EVAWI), San Luis Obispo, CA, USA
  2. 2End Violence Against Women International (EVAWI), Addy, WA, USA
  1. Email:Kim@evawintl.org


Media coverage often reports “good” news about the criminal justice system’s ability to effectively respond to sexual assault, concluding that the past two decades have seen an increase in rape reporting, prosecution, and conviction. The objective of this article is to examine the validity of such conclusions by critically reviewing the strengths and weaknesses of various data sources and comparing the statistics they produce. These statistics include estimates for sexual assault reporting rates and case outcomes in the criminal justice system. We conclude that such pronouncements are not currently supported by statistical evidence, and we outline some directions for future research and reform efforts to make the “good news” a reality in the United States.

Links to full report: 



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Lima, 27 mar. 12. AmecoPress/ SEMlac.- La cruel muerte de tres mujeres a manos de sus parejas en la última semana en Lima volvió a poner en agenda el tema del feminicidio y la necesidad de medidas complementarias que permitan prevenir estos asesinatos.

El 20 de marzo, Tomasa Pozo, de 20 años, fue degollada por su pareja en la habitación que compartían. El homicida la dejó desangrándose y poco después intentó infructuosamente quitarse la vida.

Un día antes, Milagros Chipana fue ahorcada por su conviviente delante de sus cuatro hijos. El asesino no mostró arrepentimiento por el crimen sino por dejar abandonados a sus hijos mientras esté preso.

Y el 23 de marzo, luego de una semana de dolorosa agonía que llevó a los médicos a ponerla en coma inducido, falleció Leyla Zegarra, a quien su pareja roció gasolina y prendió fuego tras una discusión.

También en este caso, el agresor -Jairo Chacón- trató de suicidarse sin conseguirlo y fue internado en el mismo hospital que su víctima, pero será dado de alta en cualquier momento y puesto a disposición del poder judicial.

Tras estos hechos, autoridades, organizaciones de mujeres, redes sociales y el público parecen haber tomado conciencia de que no basta con tener una ley que penalice los feminicidios si paralelamente no se realizan campañas sostenidas que eviten los asesinatos de más mujeres en el país.


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April 4, 2012—Join an Online Discussion
Serving Sexual Assault Victims in Rural Communities

On April 4, 2012, at 2 p.m. (eastern time), in commemoration of National Sexual Assault Awareness Month, the Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) will present a Web Forum discussion with Robin Clover and Tiffany Eskelson-Maestas on best practices for serving sexual assault victims in rural communities.

MORE INFO: http://ovc.ncjrs.gov/WebForumNotice/032812/welcome.html

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Afghanistan: Hundreds of Women, Girls Jailed for ‘Moral Crimes’
Government Should Target Abusers, Not Victims
(Kabul) – The Afghan government should release the approximately 400 women and girls imprisoned in Afghanistan for “moral crimes,” Human Rights Watch said in a new report released today. The United States and other donor countries should press the Afghan government under President Hamid Karzai to end the wrongful imprisonment of women and girls who are crime victims rather than criminals.
The 120-page report, “‘I Had to Run Away’: Women and Girls Imprisoned for ‘Moral Crimes’ in Afghanistan,” is based on 58 interviews conducted in three prisons and three juvenile detention facilities with women and girls accused of “moral crimes.” Almost all girls in juvenile detention in Afghanistan had been arrested for “moral crimes,” while about half of women in Afghan prisons were arrested on these charges. These “crimes” usually involve flight from unlawful forced marriage or domestic violence. Some women and girls have been convicted of zina, sex outside of marriage, after being raped or forced into prostitution.

press release continues with link to report...



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EXCERPT from eligibility and background paper:
As a way to better inform our work on this issue, OVW has held four roundtable discussions 
since 2008 to examine the intersection of domestic violence and custody.  Meeting participants 
included subject-matter experts in the field, such as judges, attorneys, domestic violence 
advocates, researchers, child protection specialists and protective parents.  These experts 
identified the following issues as barriers to safe outcomes for battered women and their 
children involved in custody proceedings: 
 Lack of screening for domestic violence;  
 Judges’ limited access to pertinent information regarding the history of violence;  
 Inadequate training on the dynamics of domestic violence, the risk factors for continued 
violence after separation of the parents, and the effects of child exposure to domestic 
 Over-reliance on third-party recommendations to the court;  
 Lack of training, standards and accountability for third-party evaluators making custody 
recommendations to the court, such as custody evaluators and guardians ad litem;  
 The private-pay system for custody evaluations rather than court-funded, which can 
distort the process and result in biased evaluations;  
 Inappropriate use of mental health assessments of the parent/s;  
 Limited access to attorneys;  
 Lack of information and resources for pro se litigants regarding court procedures; 
 Lack of services for families that come before the court;  
 Invisibility of children’s perspectives in court proceedings; 
 Effects of race, class and gender biases on outcomes; 
 Presence of structural barriers that delay hearings and court decisions; and 
 Lack of understanding about how batterers misuse the judicial process, which enables 
them to continue to harass and threaten survivors through protracted litigation. 

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ISLAMABAD -- Pakistani acid attack victim Fakhra Younus had endured more than three dozen surgeries over more than a decade to repair her severely damaged face and body when she finally decided life was no longer worth living.

The 33-year-old former dancing girl – who was allegedly attacked by her then-husband, an ex-lawmaker and son of a political powerhouse – jumped from the sixth floor of a building in Rome, where she had been living and receiving treatment.

Her March 17 suicide and the return of her body to Pakistan on Sunday reignited furor over the case, which received significant international attention at the time of the attack. Her death came less than a month after a Pakistani filmmaker won the country's first Oscar for a documentary about acid attack victims.

Younus' story shows how women are sometimes badly mistreated in Pakistan and is a reminder that the country's rich and powerful often appear to operate with impunity. Younus' ex-husband, Bilal Khar, was eventually acquitted, but many believe he used his connections to escape the law's grip – a common occurrence in Pakistan.

article continues... 


BBC VIDEO Interview with Karen Sherman, Director, Women for Women International

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