On 25 and 26 January 2017, ESCWA convened a meeting to discuss a study it is drafting on the “Status of Arab Women,” with particular emphasis on violence against women. The two-day meeting gathered prominent experts from the region and beyond representing civil society and UN entities working on the subject matter. Hosted at the UN House in Beirut, the meeting fell within the scope of the ESCWA project “Estimating the Cost of the Economic Impact of Violence against Women in the Arab Region” that is conducted in partnership with UN-Women.
The present study is being developed in collaboration with UN-Women and the Institute for Women Studies in the Arab World at the Lebanese American University (LAU). It analyzes the linkages between violence against women and socioeconomic dimensions such as health and women empowerment. It takes stock of the international methodologies to estimate the cost of economic impact of violence against women and proposes a methodology that fits the Arab region and matches the current efforts and available data on violence against women.
In her take on the meeting, Director of ESCWA Centre for Women Mehrinaz El Awady said, “the study aims to highlight the importance of estimating the cost of violence as an innovative approach and an advocacy tool to influence policy making. It proposes to introduce policy makers with the costing technique that along with the acknowledged human rights violation can provide a complete picture of the implications of violence against women on the individual, society and the national economy. It examines the linkages between violence against women and social, economic and health related factors.”
Participating experts welcomed the efforts of ESCWA to highlight the cost of the economic impact of violence against women and different methodologies, citing the importance of this work for awareness-raising and prompting policy change to address domestic violence in particular.
Experts proposed a range of recommendations and next steps for actions building on this important work. The study will be launched during 2017, and will be used to inform the ESCWA project on costing violence against women as well as the 8th session of the ESCWA Committee on Women.
Read more on the work of ESCWA Centre for Women: