Fight for Women’s Rights with Gender Violence Bills

Idihar Chaieb is a women from Tunisia. After 14 years of sexual harassment in her work she finally sued his boss in to the court. Even though she didn’t do anything wrong, it was a difficult situation for her.

“I was afraid to speak out. I thought I would be blamed,” she said.

However, Iduhar Chaieb made her decision with lots of courage. She gained courage since she was supported by a former teacher, women’s organisations, and her son. But her first trial dismayed Idihar. The judge ruled against her. As a result, Idihar was fired from her job, which she worked for about 25 years. Even though Tunisia is referred as the most progressive country in Arab for their women rights, it happens a lot. The violence and harassment on women occur a lot despite the reputation of the country. Shockingly, about 47.6% of women in age of 18-64 experienced sexual harassment in the 2010 survey. Most of the male who sexually raped a women will serve not much year in the jail and sometimes respected by their town people. However, the women who were raped are not even accepted by their own family.

To prevent this, there has been some changes. The government passed the law about sexual abuse and strengthen the punishment.

According to Ounissi: “Passing the law is the beginning of the process, not the end. You need the support of the education system; this starts at school. You need a training programmed for the police. And you need to look at television shows that normalize violence. People are more influenced by what’s on television than what’s in a parliamentary bill.”

I believe it is really courageous of these women who are willing to make changes. Even though they live in a very patriarchal society, they are trying to make the difference.

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