Sexual Violence : A Global Pandemic/10th February to 16th February 2018


 Sexual Violence: A Global Pandemic

Written by Nikunj Morarka

Policy and Legal Team

Sexual violence is a global pandemic. One in three women experiences sexual or physical violence – most likely from their intimate partner, according to a report from the World Health Organization. There is an urgent need to increase sensitization regarding sexual violence and the awareness of consent and sexual violence amongst persons at large. In this series, we examine sexual violence and related issues that have come up in the news, on a weekly basis, published every Saturday. This is an attempt to improve awareness regarding incidents of sexual violence and related matters, so that we, as a society can take steps towards collective action to reduce its incidence. It is an effort to ensure that we acknowledge the rampant sexual violence that exists, lest we forget.

This issue looks at 10th February to 16th February 2018.


Harassment at law firm

One of New Zealand’s most prestigious law firms has become embroiled in allegations of sexual misconduct towards interns – allegations which have cost two lawyers their jobs, and caused the entire profession to question how it treats its most vulnerable staff. An investigation by website Newsroom has alleged “a pattern of sexually inappropriate behaviour” by a number of senior male lawyers at the firm Russell McVeagh towards female university students who spent a summer clerking for the firm in Wellington in 2016.

Amazon TV show star dropped after investigation

Jeffrey Tambor has been dropped from the Emmy-winning Amazon comedy-drama Transparent after sexual harassment allegations. The decision was confirmed by Amazon on Thursday after an investigation. The actor, who played the transgender matriarch Maura Pfefferman in the show, was accused of misconduct by his co-star Trace Lysette in November.

“He came in close, put his bare feet on top of mine so I could not move, leaned his body against me, and began quick, discreet thrusts back and forth against my body,” Lysette said in a statement on Twitter. “I felt his penis on my hip through his thin pajamas.”

Female lawmakers release harassment report

Female lawmakers in Maryland released a report Friday that details numerous alleged accounts of sexual harassment and assault by male colleagues, including one incident in which a woman said she had to “forcefully” push a co-worker away after he grabbed her breasts and stuck his tongue in her ear during a ride home from a work event.

The accounts — all anonymous — are part of a 38-page report that includes recommendations intended to shift the culture in Annapolis and to hold violators accountable. They include the hiring of “in-house expert” to track reports and investigate complaints of harassment, the hiring of an independent investigator to look into claims against lawmakers and anti-sexual harassment training for lobbyists.

Harassment at Delhi institute

A government institute in New Delhi has fired a top Indian scientist leading a drug discovery effort after an inquiry panel probed allegations that he had sexually harassed a junior research scientist through language, behaviour, and physical advances. The Translational Health Science and Technology Institute (THSTI) in Faridabad (Haryana), a laboratory under India’s department of biotechnology, has terminated the services of Kanury V.S. Rao, 59, the head of its Drug Discovery Research Centre (DDRC), officials with the institute’s governing body said.

Amala Paul issues clarification on harassment

South Indian actor Amala Paul has issued a public statement in order to protect her manager Pradeep Kumar after a section of media reports suggested his hand in the sexual harassment incident faced by the actor. In the statement, she also revealed that the accused who approached her with ill-intentions was a member of an organised sex racket. Not just Amala’s, he also had all the information, including phone numbers of other actresses, who were part of the star show that happened earlier this month in Malaysia.



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