By Tim Saunders on
Actress Nicole Kidman spoke out against violence towards women at UN Headquarters on Tuesday, and urged people to add their names to a website that calls on world leaders to end impunity for perpetrators, provide services for survivors and, most importantly, invest in prevention.
The 40-year-old, who is seven months pregnant, attended the news conference to encourage world leaders and the general public to join the global fight to end violence against women, what she calls the “most widespread human rights violation of our time.”
“One in three women will encounter violence in some way, shape or form against them in their lifetime,” said the heavily-pregnant Kidman. “That’s an extraordinary statistic. Yet do we ever hear it?”
The Australian star became a UNIFEM goodwill ambassador in January 2006, and used Tuesday’s meeting to urge people of all nations to add their names to the www.saynotoviolence.org website and demand “that ending violence against women be made a top priority for governments everywhere.” She also encouraged the private sector to contribute to the U.N. Trust Fund to End Violence against Women, which provides grants for programs in the developing world to help fight the scourge.
The website was established in November 2007, and has so far gathered over 211,000 names in its mission to raise awareness of the issue. In January, the U.N. Foundation said it would donate $1 to the fund for each of the first 100,000 signatures – a milestone that has been and gone, and still the number of people showing their support has shown no sign of slowing down.
And Joanne Sandler, Acting Executive Director of UNIFEM, said progress has been made: 89 countries have laws on domestic violence, more than 100 have made rape a crime, 90 have provisions against sexual harassment, and 93 on human trafficking.
Copyright © 2008 Look to the Stars