International Women Human Rights Defenders Day also falls within the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence campaign, driven by UN Women.
“On International Women Human Rights Defenders Day, I want to recognise and commemorate the tireless efforts of women human rights defenders around the world, especially those at risk in migration contexts, for which there needs to be greater protections” said Kate.
“Women human rights defenders play a crucial role in protecting migrant rights and in doing so, they face enormous risks: to themselves, to their families, and to the people they seek to defend.
“We urgently need enhanced protections for all women human rights defenders to safeguard them from violence, discrimination and harassment. We must ensure that women can defend human rights safely and without fear of retaliation.
“While all migrants may experience negative stereotyping and prejudice, women, girls, and gender-diverse people too often face the brunt of discriminatory migration laws and policies. They face violence, sexual exploitation, forced labour and trafficking, particularly when migration is not safe and regular pathways are unobtainable.
“The 16 Days of Activism initiative provides an opportunity for us all to act in solidarity with women’s rights activists in calling for a world free from violence for all women and girls”, Kate added.
“This is our chance to stand with those who risk their lives to protect others.”