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This is a summary of the research report “From impunity to justice: Domestic legal remedies for cases of technology-related violence against women”, by the Women’s Legal and Human Rights Bureau. This summary was prepared by Richa Kaul Padte.

The present report seeks to examine existing domestic legal remedies for survivors of technology-related violence against women (VAW) to access justice. The research aimed to a) identify available domestic remedies in cases of technology-related VAW, b) analyse the strengths and limitations of available domestic legal remedies in relation to women’s experiences, c) highlight the voices and experiences of survivors who have sought legal remedy and to identify insights from their experiences, and d) develop recommendations for both ICT and VAW policies based on the research findings. An examination of the remedies for technology-related VAW focused on three elements: their adequacy and effectiveness, the culture of impunity, and survivors’ own agency and power.

The research was carried out between April 2013 and June 2014 by the Association for Progressive Communications (APC) as part of a multi-country project entitled “Ending violence: Women’s rights and safety online”. The research was conducted in collaboration with partners located in seven countries: OneWorldSEE in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Colnodo in Colombia, Si Jeunesse Savait in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the International Association of Women in Radio and Television and KICTANet in Kenya, an APC project associate in Mexico, Bytes for All in Pakistan, and the Foundation for Media Alternatives in the Philippines.

The two central research activities were:

• Mapping domestic legal remedies through desk reviews/interviews
• Conducting in-depth interviews to gather women’s and girls’ experiences of accessing justice and compiling case studies.

A total of 24 case studies were documented across the seven countries, and each country’s domestic legal remedies were mapped. The research was limited by two factors. The first was that all the laws and interviews reviewed were analysed in English after being translated from their original languages. The research was conducted under the assumption that the English translations were faithfully made from the original languages. The second limitation of the research was that survivors were not always available for interviews. In these instances, social workers, relatives or legal counsel mediate their voices.

To read more on the research findings click here

This research is part of the APC “End violence: Women’s rights and safety online” project funded by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs (DGIS) and is based on a strong alliance with partners in seven countries: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Colombia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, Mexico, Pakistan and the Philippines.

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