Posts Tagged ‘acid’

ASF ZAKAT CAMPAIGN LAUNCHED, READY FOR THE CHALLENGE?

June 25th, 2014

Presentation Of Needed Amendments For Comprehensive Acid And Burn Crime Bill 2014

June 25th, 2014

ASF Chairperson Valerie Khan along with Advocate Saad Rasool at Punjab provincial Assembly

Discussing the coming presentation to women parliamentary caucus members

The presentation in the Women Parliamentary Caucus was chaired by Fauzia Viqar, Chairperson PCSW and co -chaired by Minster for Social Welfare Department Punjab, to discuss the comprehensive legislation submitted by Asma Bokhari in Punjab Assembly on 5th June 2014. Valerie Khan and Saad Rasool explained that majority of acid and burn victims came from Punjab, that resources were available in pakistan : PIDSA project to build the Rehabilitation Center in Multan, inclusion of acid and burn victims in Fund for Women in Detention and in Distress, Bait Ul mal and other schemes… The comprehensive legislation will address all aspects of the acid and burn phenomenon that could not be tackled through a simple -but essential- amendment in the PPC.

CHASE: ASF new project in collaboration with ASTI, BVSN and UK AID

April 16th, 2014

ASF new campaign : what to do in case of acid attack...

From Myra Imran, The News

April 15th, 2014
Tuesday, April 15, 2014
From Print Edition
7  0  1  0
Islamabad

From 2007 to 2013, around 949 cases of acid attacks have been reported in the country. Among the total number, 519 were women whereas majority of cases (589) were reported from Punjab region.

The statistics were shared by the Chairperson Acid Survivors Foundation (ASF) Valerie Khan at the launch a report titled ‘Fostering Effective Implementation of Pro Human Rights Laws: Criminal Law Amendment Act 2011 (Act XXV), An Example of Good Practice.’ Valerie said that from January till March 2014, 40 cases of acid attacks have been reported in the country.

The report presents the efforts Pakistani government and civil society in improving the implementation of the above mentioned law. The event was organised by ASF in collaboration with National Commission on the Status of Women and Australian Aid.

The report highlighted that acid attacks reporting had increased (110 attacks in 2012 and 143 in 2013) which shows an encouraging trend to further break the silence and denounce violence against women and girls.

Additionally, the report insisted on the fact that police had made tremendous efforts to register due and correct FIRs under the new laws passed on December 12, 2011 when it faced acid attack cases. While only 1 per cent of the FIRs were registered under the correct law in 2012, 71 per cent of the FIRs registered in 2013 were under the new and correct law. The report mentions that many survivors still do not have sufficient or adequate access to medical and rehabilitation services, 65 per cent of the victims still could not access justice in 2013 and national consolidated data is still required.

Marvi Memon, the Chief Guest, declared that since 2010, Pakistan had come long way and she insisted that those improvements needed to be celebrated, but she also indicated that there was still a long way to go. She stressed that the “Comprehensive Acid and Burn Crime Bill” must be passed.

“Now there is sufficient momentum to support this bill, and we owe it to other survivors, we will continue the fight,” she said.

The event was attended by various stakeholders from different areas in Pakistan and it included law enforcement agencies representatives, lawyers, doctors, survivors, members of civil society media, acid survivors themselves.

The panel discussion after the report launch was chaired by Chairperson of the National Commission on the Status of Women Khawar Mumtaz. Kishwar Zehra, MNA from MQM, was also amongst the panelists in addition to Australian High Commissioner to Pakistan Peter Hayward and Chairperson ASF Valerie Khan Yusufzai.

All participants underlined the need to create awareness in order to challenge discriminatory and patriarchal mindsets, as well as transfer knowledge to achieve positive results in fostering law implementation. They were informed that judges now tend to punish far more severely in case of acid attack. before 2011, the average conviction was 6 to 10 years, now it is generally at least 20 years. It was shared that in general, convictions were more severe since 2012, and judiciary was trying to ensure trials in a shorter timeframe to provide relief to survivors since 2013.

Chairperson NCSW Khawar Mumtaz termed it encouraging that more reporting occurred but she also insisted the need to work on data and build up synergies to face the remaining challenges.

Valerie Khan called upon the government to lead the way and pass the Comprehensive Acid and Burn Crime Bill that Marvi Memon has tabled in the Parliamentary Committee of Law and Justice last week. “We are ready to provide technical help to review the comprehensive bill, but it is urgent that the federal and provincial governments ensure stronger protection to Pakistani citizens. Pakistani has inspired many other countries to address acid violence such as Columbia and India but positive steps such as establishing burn centers and social rehabilitation centers, or medical boards must be part of a legislative framework to be sustained and institutionalized.”

Australian High Commissioner Peter Hayward congratulated all stakeholders for those improvements and reiterated Australia’s commitment to support ASF action.

Awards were later on distributed to police, lawyers and doctors from all over the country, what ASF called, the true heroes.

ASF press release

April 15th, 2014

Press release

On 14th April 2014, Acid Survivors Foundation Pakistan organised an event in collaboration with National Commission on the Status of Women and Australian Aid to launch a report titled : Fostering effective implementation of pro human rights laws: Criminal Law Amendment Act 2011 (Act XXV), an example of good practice. ASF-P presented how Pakistan had worked to improve the implementation of the above mentioned law.

Ms Marvi Memon, PML-N MNA, a champion for the fight against acid violence in Pakistan, was welcome as a Chief Guest, Mrs Khawar Mumtaz, Chairperson of the National Commission on the Status of Women chaired the panel of discussion. Mrs Kishwar Zehra, MQM –MNA was also amongst the panelists in addition with his excellency, Mr Peter Hayward, Australian High Commissioner to Pakistan, Ms neelam Toru, Chairperson of the Provincial Commission on the Status of Women and Mrs Valerie Khan Yusufzai, Chairperson Acid Survivors Foundation Pakistan.

The event was attended by various stakeholders from different areas in Pakistan (Balochistan, ICT, Punjab, KP, Sindh) and it included Law Enforcement Agencies representatives, lawyers, doctors, survivors, members of civil society media, acid survivors themselves.

The report highlighted that acid attacks reporting had increased (110 attacks in 2012 and 143 in 2013) which shows an encouraging trend to further break the silence and denounce violence against women and girls.

Additionally, the report insisted on the fact that police had made tremendous efforts to register due and correct FIRs under the new laws passed on 12th December 2011 when it faced acid attack cases. While only 1% of the FIRs were registered under the correct law, WITHOUT ASF intervention in 2012, 71% of the FIRs registered in 2013 were under the new and correct law, without ASF intervention.

All participants underlined that awareness campaigns to challenge discriminatory and patriarchal mindsets, as well as transfer knowledge, were crucial to achieve positive results in fostering law implementation. Judges now tend to punish far more severely in case of acid attack: before 2011, the average conviction was 6 to 10 years, now it is generally at least 20 years.

ASF also informed participants that in general, convictions were more severe since 2012, and judiciary was trying to ensure trials in a shorter timeframe to provide relief to survivors since 2013.

Mrs Khawar Mumtaz Chairperson NCSW acknowledged that those improvements were positive, that more reporting occurred thanks to a stronger mobilization of Pakistani citizens to denounce this worst form of gender based violence, but she also insisted on the remaining challenges, the need to work on data and build up synergies like the ones proposed by ASF.

Many survivors still do not have sufficient or adequate access to medical and rehabilitation services, 65% of the victims still could not access justice in 2013 and national consolidated data is still required. Marvi Memon, the Chief Guest declared that since 2010, Pakistan had come long way and she insisted that those improvements needed to be celebrated, but she also indicated that there was still a long way to go: the “comprehensive acid and burn crime bill” must be passed, now there is sufficient momentum to support this bill, and we owe it to other survivors, we will continue the fight and we will make hings move.

To this effect, Valerie Khan Yusufzai, called upon the government of Pakistan to lead the way and pass the Comprehensive Acid and Burn Crime Bill that Marvi Memon has tabled in the Parliamentary Committee of Law and Justice last week. “We are ready to provide technical help to review the comprehensive bill”, but it is urgent that the federal and provincial governments ensure stronger protection to Pakistani citizens. Much has been done, Pakistani has inspired many other countries to address acid violence such as Columbia and India but positive steps such as establishing burn centers and social rehabilitation centers, or medical boards must be part of a legislative framework to be sustained and institutionalized.

Mr Peter Hayward, Australian High Commissioner, congratulated ASF and all stakeholders for those improvements and reiterated Australia’s commitment to support ASF action.

Mrs Neelam Toru announced that the comprehensive bill was now ready with KP social welfare department so that it could be tabled, she said she knew cases were under-reported in KP as she had just been told of a case in Mardan on her way towards the event.

Ms Kiswar Zehra ensured ASF of MQM full support for the passage of he comprehensive acid and burn crime bill in assemblies.

Awards were later on distributed to police, lawyers and doctors from all over the country, what ASF called, the true heroes.

ASF Event In Collaboration With Australian Aid And NCSW, Join Us!

April 15th, 2014

ASF Pakistan And NCSW Join Hands To Counter Acid Violence In Pakistan

April 15th, 2014

Article from Daily News:

NCSW, ASF sign MoU for data collection, monitoring

ISLAMABAD: The National Commission on the Status of Women (NCSW) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Acid Survivors Foundation (ASF) for the establishment of a mechanism for data collection and monitoring data update on a six-month basis
The purpose of this MoU is to organise training/networking workshops for capacity building and sensitisation of parliamentarians/members of assemblies, especially women, in relation with acid and burn violence. Both NCSW and ASF would identify, document and share good practices that will be capitalised upon in the future to address gender-based violence, especially violence against women. NCSW Chairperson Khawar Mumtaz termed the MoU a milestone for NCSW and said it was an important step towards testing and developing a workable monitoring mechanism that will provide the basis for appropriate actions. Mumtaz hoped that the MoU will provide a good model for collectively promoting women’s rights and working towards achieving gender equity as envisaged in Article 25 of the constitution. According to the Acid Survivors Foundation the country has a high survival rate amongst the victims of acid attacks. The victims, who mostly hail from low-income groups, face the uphill task of rebuilding their lives with physical challenges and psychological changes, which require long-term surgical treatment and in-depth intervention from psychologists and counselors. The ASF Chairperson Valerie Khan defined the MoU as “an interesting step towards institutionalising the promotion and protection of women’s rights in Pakistan”. She said that “such collaborations between the civil society and government institutions are crucial for enhancing good governance in the current scenario present in the country”.

valerie Khan Yusufzai, Chairperson ASF, along with her excellency Mrs Khawar Mumtaz, Chairperson National Commission on The Status of Women

A New French Publication On Stigma with Contribution From ASF Chairperson, Valerie Khan Yusufzai.

March 1st, 2014

Accueil

Les porteurs de stigmates. Entre expériences intimes, contraintes institutionnelles et expressions collectives – Héas S., Dargère C. (dir.)

Héas S., Dargère C. (dir.), (2014). Les porteurs de stigmates. Entre expériences intimes, contraintes institutionnelles et expressions collectives, Paris, L’Harmattan, Collection Des Hauts&Débats (grand format), février, 298 pages.

Les processus de stigmatisation alimentent et entretiennent l’exclusion. Cet ouvrage fournit un espace de parole aux victimes : être brûlée à l’acide, souffrir d’un trouble psychique handicapant, vivre des orientations sexuelles minoritaires, etc. Il présente des analyses dans le cadre de l’école, du sport, de l’hôpital général ou psychiatrique. Enfin, il précise la condition de personnes vulnérables particulièrement exposées à la stigmatisation. La sociologie, l’ethnologie, l’histoire, les sciences de l’information et de la communication, mais aussi la pédagogie sont mobilisées pour mieux comprendre ces processus et ces personnes, leurs trajectoires, leurs réactions, leurs mobilisations. Le stigmate n’est pas une marque indélébile inscrite une fois pour toute. Ses conséquences sont parfois durables, mais les actions et réactions, les adaptations matérielles, symboliques, permettent de construire des expériences riches d’une variété humaine, d’une mixité sociale et culturelle, à vivre, à expérimenter dans le respect de tous et toutes.

Engaging youth…

March 1st, 2014

Ways to prevent acid crime discussed

Published: March 1, 2014

Participants discuss govt’s role, laws.PHOTO: FILE

LAHORE: Students from over 20 schools and universities of Lahore on Friday discussed the state of acid crime in Pakistan and what the government had been able to do to curb it.

The event was organised by Beaconhouse Law Society at its Defence campus.

The topic for discussion was:  Acid violence- the failings of the Pakistani legal system in tackling the problem. What are the possible legal solutions and their effectiveness with regard to counteraction, regulation and rehabilitation ?

Thinking out loud

The purpose of the exercise was to inculcate reasoning and critical thinking among students and creating awareness about the legal system.

Fatima Kausar, an A-levels student, said acid was a “pernicious weapon” and its sale should be strictly regulated. She stressed the need for buyers to be registered with the government and required to disclose the purpose of every purchase. She said there was also a need for safety procedures to prevent theft.

“There is evidence that acid attacks occur more frequently in areas where acid is widely used for commercial purposes. Businesses that use acid can help prevent its abuse.”

Mahnoor Ahmed, a student of National Grammar School, said a zero tolerance policy should be adopted in such cases. Those found aiding such crime must be considered equally guilty, she said.

Learning through discussion

The speeches were followed by an interaction between a panel of experts on the topic.

Valarie Khan, a French human rights activist and Acid Survivors Foundation chairperson, said acid crime was a global phenomenon.

She said acid violence was the worst form of gender-based violence in Bangladesh, India, Nepal and Pakistan.

Ayesha Tasleem, legal head at Depilex Smile Again Foundation, said an important aspect of the issue was gender equity that had been neglected in education imparted to men and women. Education with a mindset change is imperative to curb this crime, she added.

Lawyer Saad Rasul said there was a large gap between the current legal framework and an ideal system. He said while there were laws to register acid violence as an offence, safeguards and measures to prevent and prosecute after were absent.

Gulraiz Zulfikar, a fellow at the American Joint Cancer Committee, said several acid burns were treatable at acid burn centres functioning under non government organisations, government and the army. “Survivors do not seek sympathy, but they need restoration of self-esteem,” he said.

The panellists said that a strong retributive punishment was not the solution to the problem. They advocated life sentences for convicts.

Law Society president Ayza Ishaq, who moderated the discussion session, said that law students needed to be part of something “bigger than themselves”.

Published in The Express Tribune, March 1st, 2014.

ASFs In The World Joining Hands To Provide Quality Psycho-Social Support To Acid Survivors

February 25th, 2014

All ASF srepresentatives from left to right: ASF bangladesh, BSVN (Nepal), CASC (Cambodia), ASF India, ASF Pakistan

Amenah Hassan, ASF representative, receiving an award at the closure ceremony of the International conference held in Bangladesh.

Presenting an example of good practice