Due to the present situation of the COVID 19 lockdown, women and children who are victims of
domestic violence are being provided with legal advice, at governmental and non-governmental levels,
through social media, online, and mobile phones. Recently, various news outlets have reported on the
rise of incidents relating to violence against women and children. In light of this, an online meeting had
been arranged to discuss and exchange ideas on how coordination at governmental and nongovernmental levels can be increased. In conclusion of the meeting, women’s rights activists, lawyers
and legal aid workers have highlighted the following recommendations:

  1. Due to the lockdown, all cases of domestic violence across the nation should be brought within
    the ambit of the proposed virtual court and through it, necessary steps should be taken to
    provide urgent protection.
  2. The process for Bangladesh Police to be able to file General Diaries online should be activated
    and this service should be implemented nationwide. Further, steps should be taken to ensure
    that besides treating the COVID 19 situation seriously, the law enforcement should also start
    taking into serious consideration the issue of eliminating domestic violence and/or oppression.
    A ‘women’s desk’ should be installed at every police station to ensure that victims of domestic
    violence receive assistance on a priority basis.
  3. The hotline and helpline numbers of all organizations connected to the coalition for the
    Citizen’s Initiative against Domestic Violence (CIDV) should be circulated through various
    mediums, for the prevention of violence against women and children.
  4. As shelter homes at governmental and non-governmental levels, due to the risk of COVID 19,
    are not currently providing shelter to victims, necessary steps should be taken for the victims to
    be tested at the shelter homes, so as to ensure proper protection for them.
  5. The online and telecounselling numbers for women and children related ministries be
    circulated more extensively through various governmental and non-governmental media and
    social media, in order to ensure maximum service.
  6. If marginalized people, especially disabled women, women and children from hard to reach
    areas, and in the Rohingya community are victims of violence during this time, the matter
    should be treated with utmost importance and urgency.
    On the occasion of National Legal Aid Day, and in light of increasing concern arising from the
    increase in incidents of violence against women and children in the current situation, the coalition
    for prevention of domestic violence (CIDV Coalition) secretariat, and Bangladesh Legal Aid and
    Services Trust (BLAST) arranged this discussion

Approximate 35 persons participated in the discussion, including Dr. Faustina Perera, representatives
from BRAC University, Centre for Peace and Justice, WECAN, BRAC, Naripokkho, GIZ, Bangladesh
National Women Lawyer’s Association, Ain o Shalish Kendra, Acid Survivor’s Foundation, BLAST,
WDDF, YWCA. Also present were lawyers, researchers, women right’s activists and representatives
from disability rights organizations.

Message Convener
Citizen’s Initiative against Domestic Violence (CIDV)
Bangladesh Legal Aid and Services Trust (BLAST)
Taposhi Rabaya, Assistant Director (Mediation & Awareness)
Phone: 01717108925
E-mail: cidv.bd@gmail.com

Download Press Release (PDF) Version: