By Emily Kheen
The Sonke Gender Justice Network has always believed strongly in the importance of civil society advocacy initiatives, and after extensive internal discussions we have decided to focus our advocacy efforts on supporting the Shukumisa Campaign to improve implementation of the Sexual Offences Act.
This decision was based on our awareness of the difficulties of obtaining justice for sexual offences in South Africa, despite the progressive legislation.
Our local advocacy work has often included supporting community members who have been raped or assaulted; accompanying them to court, engaging with local police and prosecutors to try and ensure that the cases are investigated and prosecuted rigorously and helping to mobilize the local community.
Fairly recently, our pilot One Man Can Branch in Khayelitsha supported one of its own members through a rape trial. Despite the ongoing efforts of Sonke and the community, the case was ultimately dismissed. This frustrating experience highlighted for us the importance of advocating for improved implementation across the board and it is with this in mind that we are proudly supporting Shukumisa.
Read the full article on the Sonke Gender Justice Network’s website
The Sonke Gender Justice Network is a Shukumisa partner.