Advancing Gender Equality in Northern Ireland: Addressing Domestic Violence and Human Rights Protections for Women
Prof Monica McWilliams and Prof Fionnuala Ní Aoláin (Ulster)
This presentation broadly addresses issues of gender equality in the context of the Northern Ireland transition. It underscores the necessity of advancing a broad equality agenda in post-conflict Northern Ireland, which mandates directly addressing gender-based violence. The speakers’ collective research consistently connects the economic and social advancement of women’s rights with the prevention of violence against women. Based on decades of empirical research addressing the experience and regulation of domestic violence in Northern Ireland, this presentation outlines current research and data on domestic violence in Northern Ireland and elsewhere. This dovetails with the second part of the presentation which concerns advancement of a domestic violence strategy by the Department of Justice in Northern Ireland. The presentation addresses the importance of integrating international human rights standards into the advancement of gender equality in Northern Ireland. It discusses the new CEDAW General Comment 30 on the Responsibility of States to Women’s Human Rights in post-conflict settings, as well as the implications of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 and subsequent Security Council resolutions for women’s rights in Northern Ireland.