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Campaign logoUN Secretary-General's campaign:
United to end the violence against women
. Ban Ki-moon
"Break the silence. When you witness violence against women and girls, do not sit back. Act."
Ban Ki-moon, former Secretary-General

Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon
There is one universal truth, applicable to all countries, cultures and communities: violence against women is never acceptable, never excusable, never tolerable.

SECRETARY-GENERAL BAN KI-MOON

Orange Day

UNiTE ribbons on display at Zaatari Camp, Jordan. Photo: Nejma Bouchama/UN Women


May 2014


Engaging the Corporate Sector in Ending
Violence against Women and Girls

In July 2012 the Secretary-General’s UNiTE to End Violence against Women campaign proclaimed every 25th of the month as "Orange Day". Initiated and led by the UNiTE campaign’s Global Youth Network, worldwide activities implemented on this day by UN country offices and civil society organizations strive to highlight issues relevant to preventing and ending violence against women and girls, not only once a year, on 25 November (International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women), but every month.

In 2013, the UNiTE campaign focused its Orange Days on highlighting recommendations of the agreed conclusions of the 57th session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW57), focused on the theme of the elimination and prevention of all forms of violence against women and girls. Orange Day highlighted issues including safe schools, safe work places and cyber space as a safe space for women and girls. Activities culminated in a call to ‘Orange the World in 16 Days’ from November 25 and throughout the 16 Days of Activism. The Call resulted in ‘orange activities’ in over 50 countries and over 76 million people being reached through social media.

In 2014, Orange Day continues to spark actions around the world on specific themes and issues towards ending all forms of violence against women and girls. This month, UNiTE #OrangeDay will focus on engaging one of the key constituencies in efforts to prevent and eliminate violence against women and girls; the corporate sector.

VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN AND THE CORPORATE SECTOR

The economic empowerment of women is an essential element in addressing the structural and underlying causes of violence against women and girls. The corporate sector has an important role to play in efforts to prevent and end violence against women and girls given that it employs millions of women and girls and holds vast potential in offering opportunities for the enhancement of gender equality and women’s economic empowerment. Many companies are also proactive in leading and contributing to initiatives aimed at preventing and ending violence against women and girls through their marketing and communications strategies, as well as a targeted philanthropic support.

Violence against women and girls in the work place takes place in all countries throughout the world and takes many forms, including sexual harassment and bullying. All companies have the responsibility to ensure that work places are violence-free for all women and girls by taking steps such as enforcing zero-tolerance policies against verbal and/or physical abuse, sexual harassment and any other form of violence.

THE WOMEN’S EMPOWERMENT PRINCIPLES

The Women's Empowerment Principles offer guidance to companies on how to empower women in the workplace, marketplace and community. They are the result of collaboration between the UN Global Compact and UN Women. They emphasize the business case for corporate action to promote gender equality and women’s empowerment, and the principles elaborate on good practice towards these goals.

Principle 3 in particular highlights the need to ensure the health, safety and freedom from violence of all workers, suggesting various measures to prevent violence against women in the work place, on the way to work, and when travelling for business. In particular, the principle calls on companies to:

  • Establish a zero-tolerance policy towards all forms of violence at work, including verbal and/or physical abuse and prevent sexual harassment
  • Strive to offer health insurance or other needed services including for survivors of domestic violence - and ensure equal access for all employees
  • Respect women and men workers rights to time off for medical care and counseling for themselves and their dependents
  • In consultation with employees, identify and address security issues, including the safety of women traveling to and from work on company-related business
  • Train security staff and managers to recognize signs of violence against women and understand laws and company policies on human trafficking, labour and sexual exploitation

ORANGE DAY ACTIVITIES (25th May 2014)

This Orange Day, the UNiTE campaign will focus on engaging the corporate sector as key partners in efforts to end violence against women and girls.

What can you do?

  • Share the Women’s Empowerment Principles with your organization, friends and networks, and draw particular attention to Principle 3 on Health, Safety and Freedom from Violence
  • Sign the CEO Statement of Support! Have your CEO join over 750 CEOs that have signed the Statement to advance equality between women and men:
  • Share photos of yourself and your work colleagues celebrating Orange Day within your workplace on Twitter or on Facebook using the hashtag #OrangeDay
  • Call attention to the issue! Start a conversation with peers and your managers about your company’s existing policies and programmes aimed at promoting a safe and healthy work environment for women.
  • Educate employees. Organize a workshop or training on the prevention and impact of violence against women in the workplace and in the community.
  • Leverage your company’s employee engagement programme(s) to contribute to efforts to end violence against women in your community.

SAMPLE SOCIAL MEDIA MESSAGES

Twitter

On 25May, #Orangeday, #UNiTE calls on all companies to support efforts to end #VAW! Does your work place support @WEPrinciples? http://weprinciples.org v @SayNO_UNiTE

Does ur company have a zero-tolerance policy towards #VAW at work? Find out! http://ow.ly/x2n3Q via @SayNO_UNITE #OrangeDay

Today is #Orangeday! Wear orange to stop #VAW in the work place and ask your colleagues to join you. http://ow.ly/x2QGP v @SayNO_UNiTE

On 25 May, #OrangeDay, ask your CEO to sign up to support the @WEPrinciples to end #VAW at work http://ow.ly/x2QGP v @SayNO_UNiTE

It’s #OrangeDay! Wear orange & start a conversation with colleagues about #VAW. Share @WEPrinciples http://ow.ly/x2Rz1 v @sayno_unite

Facebook

Today – 25 May – is #OrangeDay. This month, the UNiTE campaign calls upon companies to support the Women’s Empowerment Principles and to ensure women’s freedom from violence at work. Check them out and share them with your friends and colleagues! http://weprinciples.org via [@SayNO.UNiTE]

Businesses have a vital role to play in ending violence against women and girls. This Orange Day – May 25th – ask your CEO to join over 750 CEOs who have signed the Women’s Empowerment Principles Statement to advance equality between women and men: http://weprinciples.org/Site/CeoStatement/ via [@SayNO.UNiTE]

This month, #OrangeDay highlights the role of the Corporate Sector in efforts to end violence against women and girls. Wear orange to show your support. Ask your colleagues to join you. Send your photos to @SayNO_UNiTE on Twitter and share them on Facebook at facebook.com/SayNO.UNiTE using the hashtag #OrangeDay!http://ow.ly/x2QGP via [@SayNO.UNiTE]

On #OrangeDay, 25 May, the #UNiTE campaign calls on the corporate sector to take action to end against women and girls. Start a conversation in your work place with colleagues and managers about how to make your work environment safer for women.. Take action! http://ow.ly/x2QGP via [@SayNO.UNiTE]