New Yorkers urged to join in the fight against gender-based violence
NEW YORK, NY— The Mayor’s Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence, Commission on Gender Equity, and other City agencies today began New York City’s 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence, an annual global campaign to raise awareness about the far reaching consequences of gender-based violence and to urge government, community, corporate, and philanthropic sectors to develop strategies that eliminate gender-based violence. From November 25 (International Day to End Violence against Women) to December 10 (International Human Rights Day), New Yorkers are encouraged to participate in the campaign by using the Action Kit and attending events around the city.
“Every day, we witness people bravely sharing their stories of persistence and survival in the face of misogyny, sexual violence, and harassment. Their courage is contagious and it powers a movement for lasting change,” said First Lady Chirlane McCray. “In New York City, we are meeting this historic moment with our own action and leadership by uplifting survivors, connecting them to support, and working to prevent violence. But we cannot do this work alone – we want all New Yorkers to be part of the solution and take action against gender-based violence in our city.”
“We must work to end all gender-based violence in New York City, and the de Blasio administration stands with survivors here and around the world,” said Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services Dr. Raul Perea-Henze. “We are proud to join this global campaign to focus attention on gender-based violence and acknowledge survivors for their strength and resilience. All New Yorkers can help to end gender-based violence, and we encourage everyone to get involved and take action during these next 16 days and throughout the year.”
Since 2014, New York City has brought this critical international campaign to the local level as part of its work to address gender-based violence. In 2018, over 12,000 New Yorkers took action against gender-based violence across the five boroughs through dozens of outreach events and programs. A recap of last year’s campaign can be viewed here.
"New Yorkers can make a meaningful difference in the lives of domestic and gender-based violence survivors in a matter of days," said Cecile Noel, Commissioner for the Mayor's Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence. "Our campaign action kit provides an effective strategy to create awareness about this human rights issue. We challenge the citizens of this great city to lead the way in eradicating domestic and gender-based violence from our communities and from all future generations."
“All New Yorkers, regardless of their gender identity, gender expression, or background, have the right to live safely in their homes, schools, workplaces, and communities. Safety is inextricably linked with one’s health, economic mobility, and overall well-being,” says Jacqueline Ebanks, Executive Director, NYC Commission on Gender Equity. “CGE is proud to work with the Mayor’s Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence in leading the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence campaign in New York City, alongside our other City agency and community partners, to mobilize New Yorkers to prevent, reduce, and eliminate all forms of gender-based violence.”
“Gender-based violence does not discriminate and so we must all do our part to stop it in its tracks,” said Mayor’s Office for International Affairs Commissioner Penny Abeywardena. “Our office works to exchange best practices with the global community and the United Nations and to showcase the connections between NYC’s progressive policies and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Among them is SDG 5: Gender Equality which, among other goals, seeks to end violence against women and girls. This work is universal but not insurmountable. Let’s recommit ourselves over the next 16 days — and beyond — to help our fellow New Yorkers. No one should have to live in fear.”
“New York City must be vigilant in eradicating gender-based violence,” said Carmelyn P. Malalis, Chair and Commissioner of the NYC Commission on Human Rights. “The New York City Human Rights Law prohibits discrimination and harassment based on gender, gender identity and expression, and status as a survivor of intimate partner violence, among other categories, and the Commission on Human Rights enforces the law to the fullest extent. The consequences of gender-based violence affect all aspects of life, from home to work to school, and it is imperative we galvanize communities to combat it at every level. Everyone deserves to live as who they are without fear of violence, and we are proud to further that goal by participating in the 16 days of activism campaign.”
Four Steps to Join the Campaign
Step I: Get Informed Learn more about gender-based violence and how it affects girls, women, transgender and gender non-conforming individuals in their homes, schools, workplaces, and communities.
Step II: Listen/Believe/Support Listen to survivors' stories without judgement. Believe their experiences and encourage survivors to believe their own voices. Support survivors when they speak up. Let all survivors know: We see you. We hear you. We believe you.
Step III: Take Action Use the resources you have to mobilize your community to end gender-based violence. If you find yourself or someone else in a vulnerable situation and in need of assistance, seek help. Throughout this guide you will find resources to support survivors of gender-based violence. Remember, you can always call 911 or the City's 24-Hour Hotline at 800-621-HOPE (4673).
“As part of the 16 Days of Activism campaign, we are calling attention to the fact that gender-based violence continues to be a profound and pervasive societal cancer, crossing lines of class, race, ethnicity, and sexuality,” said Council Member and CGE Commissioner Helen Rosenthal, Chair of the Committee onWomen & Gender Equity. “I am honored to be working with the Commission on Gender Equity, the Mayor’s Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence, my fellow Council Members, survivors, and community advocates as we shine a spotlight on GBV and develop strategies to combat this complex problem.”
“Gender based violence impacts individuals in the workplace, at home, at school, and even online. As empowered bystanders and allies, we continue to be aware of how this violence impacts our communities, including people of color, members of the LGBTQIA community and the disabled. Let's join together to prevent, reduce, and eliminate gender-based violence by getting informed, listening, believing, and supporting survivors, and also taking action if we find ourselves or someone else in a vulnerable situation. For assistance, call 9-1-1 or contact the NYC Mayor’s Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence at 1-800-621-HOPE (4673),” said City Council Majority Leader and CGE Commissioner Laurie Cumbo
“Today marks the beginning of 16 days of global action dedicated to breaking cultures of silence and shame surrounding gender-based violence,” stated Council Member and CGE Commissioner Carlina Rivera. “I am proud to partner with CGE and ENDGBV as we commit to the collective work needed to prevent, reduce and eliminate gender-based violence in our city. We must honor those who have experienced violence, especially those whose identities have been targeted — girls of color and/or transgender and gender nonconforming (TGNC) young people. We stand together in supporting survivors and fighting for a safer city for us all.”
“Having experienced the painful trauma of domestic violence within my own family as a child, I know firsthand the importance of tapping into our collective resources to bring justice and safety to every person who has been a victim and survivor of gender-based domestic violence. As a community, we must dedicate ourselves to ensuring that those impacted by gender-based domestic violence don't just survive — they thrive. This robust initiative will help bring those trapped within domestic violence’s stronghold out of the darkness to live safe, healthy, and fulfilling lives,” said Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams.
"Police receive an average of 680 domestic violence calls each day in New York City, according to NOW-NYC. As we commemorate International Day to End Violence Against Women today, all New Yorkers must do our part to end gender-based violence," said State Senator Brad Hoylman (D/WF-Manhattan). "It's why I'm sponsoring legislation at the state level to end the ban on 'walking while trans' and creating new protections for adults who have survived sexual assault. I look forward to continuing to work alongside Mayor de Blasio, the Mayor's Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence, the Commission on Gender Equity and all our fellow New Yorkers to end the scourge of gender-based violence."
"Every New Yorker, regardless of their gender identity or gender expression, deserves to live freely and without fear of violence or harassment. Knowledge is power, and the more informed New Yorkers are about the realities of gender-based violence and its impact on our communities, the better equipped we will be to take concrete action against it. I thank the Mayor’s Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence and the Commission on Gender Equity for their work to eliminate all forms of gender-based violence. Their commitment to creating safety and prosperity for all New Yorkers is what we all should strive towards," said State Senator Alessandra Biaggi (D-Bronx/Westchester).
"New Yorkers face gender-based violence everyday, and many don't know the resources that exist for those suffering to get help. We must do a better job at getting that information out to people, and this campaign will help do just that. With better education and resources we can put an end to gender-based violence," said State Senator Diane Savino.
“Pushing awareness is one of the biggest and boldest powers we have as human beings. Gender-based violence is one of the most prominent acts of cruelty we could commit on one another as fellow people and New-Yorkers. We must create safe spaces for everyone to be able to safe in expression, love and individuality. Ending Gender Based Violence is the first step,” said Assemblywoman Alicia Hyndman.
"This campaign will help put an end to gender-based violence in our city," said Council Member Daniel Dromm. "Women deserve to be safe in their homes, schools, workplaces, and elsewhere in our communities. Campaigns like these uplift survivors, help stop gender-based violence before it happens, and ensure that all stakeholders do their part to end it once and for all. I will continue to work alongside members of the administration on this important effort, and thank them for prioritizing it."
“Everyone has a part to play in the fight against gender-based violence wherever and whenever it takes shape,” said Council Member Margaret S. Chin. “The City’s 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence campaign will educate more New Yorkers about how to be stronger allies in this important effort. We must continue to deliver on our commitment to ensuring every New Yorker feels safe wherever they are – regardless of gender.”
“The courage of those who have stepped up to share their stories of sexual harassment, violence, and misogyny has helped build a powerful movement to change our laws and our norms. Each and every one of us has a role in calling out these toxic behaviors,” said Council Member Brad Lander
“Violence against an individual based on their gender or sexual identity is not to be tolerated and each of us must do what we can to eliminate this scourge from our nation and the world,” said Council Member Karen Koslowitz.
“Gender-based violence exists across cultures and communities,” said Council Member Adrienne Adams. “The 16 days of activism campaign is a positive step toward shifting the culture of gender-based violence. Working collectively, we can drive change for every victim and survivor of gender-based violence.”
“As we prepare for 16 days of activism against gender-based violence, let us remember our immigrant neighbors who are fleeing such violence and seeking asylum in our city. We must not allow the Trump Administration to succeed in dehumanizing immigrants out of existence by making the laughable claim that immigrants fleeing gender-based violence are not eligible for asylum. We cannot allow anyone to live in fear, and I commend the Commission and the Mayor’s Office for fighting back,” said Council Member Carlos Menchaca.
“Gender-based violence affects each of us, no matter your gender identity or expression. I am thankful for the Action Kit that the Commission on Gender Equity and the Mayor’s Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence (ENDGBV) have compiled that identifies quantifiable steps we can take, together, to reduce gender-based violence in our communities. It is my hope that this campaign will help raise awareness of consent across all ages— particularly our youth and teach us the importance of compassionate, supportive listening, all while rallying support for survivors. I encourage all New Yorkers to join the fight against gender-based violence as Upstanders today and every day,“ said Council Member Farah Louis.
"This year's focus of #16 days is the workplace, said Emily May, Co-Founder Executive Director, Hollaback! “And we at Hollaback! are using this time to focus specifically on sexual harassment in the workplace. Studies have shown traditional sexual harassment training has been unable to move the needle and 25% of women still experience sexual harassment. This is hope though -- the EEOC identified bystander intervention and workplace civility training as best practices -- and this year we're hoping to double the number of people trained and move the needle on this issue once and for all.”
“Girls for Gender Equity (GGE) supports the Commission on Gender Equity and the Mayor’s Office to End Domestic and Gender-based Violence in the launch of NYC’s 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence campaign,” commented Michelle Grier, Senior Director of Programs, Girls for Gender Equity. “This is an international movement, beginning November 25th, that aims to raise awareness and accountability for the eradication of gender based violence on a local and global scale. For over 17 years, GGE has been committed to the ending gender based violence and uplifting the realities of young cis and trans girls and gender non-conforming people of color. Over the next 16 days, let us continue to elevate and include the voices of our impacted young people together.”
“As a longtime provider of free violence prevention education as well as free counseling and other specialized services for NYC-based survivors of sexual and intimate partner violence and their loved ones, The Mount Sinai SAVI Program is thrilled to join ENDGBV and the NYC Commission on Gender Equity on this campaign,” stated Amanda Burden, Training & Education Outreach Supervisor, The Mount Sinai SAVI Program. “It’s exciting to collaborate as a community on programming to inspire change, promote healing, and come together in resilience for a violence-free world.”
"I am honored to be part of the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence,” said Gibney Dance Founder, CEO and Artistic Director Gina Gibney. “Witnessing the Sanctuary for Families Survivor Leaders speak their truth through performance raises awareness of this important issue and gives us hope for the future. I hope we can continue to elevate these stories and spark conversations that will help prevent future violence. Thank you to Commission on Gender Equity, Department of Aging, Mayor's Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence and Lenox Hill Neighborhood House for organizing this crucial initiative with us."
"Everyone is a human being first. Honoring human dignity is the foundation for ending gender-based violence," said Fred Sullivan, Executive Director Man Up Campaign.
About the Mayor’s Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence
The Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence develops policies and programs, provides training and prevention education, conducts research and evaluations, performs community outreach, and operates the NYC Family Justice Centers. ENDGBV collaborates with City agencies and community stakeholders to ensure access to inclusive services for survivors of domestic and gender-based violence. For more information, visit nyc.gov/ENDGBV or visit us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter.
About the Commission on Gender Equity
Founded in 2015, the Mayor’s Commission on Gender Equity (CGE) works to create a deep and lasting institutional commitment to tearing down equity barriers across New York City. CGE addresses issues of inequity and discrimination facing girls, women, and transgender and gender non-conforming persons regardless of ability, age, ethnicity/race, faith, gender expression, immigrant status, sexual orientation, and socioeconomic status. Focusing across the areas of economic mobility and opportunity, health and reproductive justice, and safety CGE ensures that the City leads in the development and implementation of best practices in gender equitable policies and programs for its workforce and its residents. For more information, visit nyc.gov/GenderEquity or visit us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter.