Based on the fact that, on a global level, 1 in 3 women have experienced physical and/or psychological and/or sexual violence in their lifetime, the cross-border and co-funded by the European Commission (EC) program CEASE (Companies in Europe ASsociated to End gender based violence) that took place from 2014 until 2019, was dedicated to the enhancement of the role of businesses in the fight against gender-based violence.
Specifically, CEASE focused on the possibility that victims of domestic violence make up part of a business’ workforce, and based on that it aimed to:
• inform and raise corporate awareness
• educate corporate executives
• foster collaborations between European businesses
• connect businesses with bodies that provide victim support
Domestic violence has an impact on all aspects of a victim’s life including their work life. At the same time, one’s work environment may be a victim’s only safe space. The EC has recognized, since the beginning of the program, the role of businesses in the effort to combat the phenomenon, since in Europe, based on 2014 data, the 87.6% of women worked in the private sector and businesses were one of the main sectors of society, with a very important capacity to multiply their mobilization and awareness-raising actions within their sphere of influence.
The assumption of actions by businesses for the support of victims of domestic violence Is included in the protection of Human Rights but also the Global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and particularly on the 5th goal for gender equality, since the phenomenon of violence against women is one of the most common Human Rights violations and one of the primary causes that lead to inequalities between men and women.
The actions of the program were:
1) Creation of a European Corporate Network, a business network that combine their powers for the combatting of gender-based violence
2) Face-to-face education of business executives and development of a relevant electronic educational tool
3) Formulation of a relevant Action Kit for businesses
4) Creation of an impact map with European bodies that take actions in issues of gender violence
5) Creation of informative and awareness-raising material
6) Implementation of informative and peer to peer webinars
More information available here: https://cease-project.eu/