IWD action in Aceh takes up gender inequality, violence against women

Sinar Indonesia – March 9, 2010
Women activists commemorate IWD in Aceh (Aceh Terkini)
Women activists commemorate IWD in Aceh (Aceh Terkini)

A peaceful action involving the distribution of leaflets and release of balloons marked the commemoration of International Women’s Day in the city of Banda Aceh on Monday March 8.

The action was held by women from several different organisations in Banda Aceh such as the Aceh Development Fund (ADF), the Aceh Anti-Corruption Movement (GeRAK) and Raising Her Voice, who distributed leaflets on the meaning of IWD at various intersections around the city.

The leaflets contained information about continuing inequalities in the region such as the low level of women’s representation in influential political and economic fields and the increase in the level of violence against women and female children both in the domestic and public domain.

The other issue taken up was the burden of reproductive work without remuneration that is still placed on women’s shoulders along with administrative and institutional structures that are still gender bias.

According to action spokesperson Nani Rahayu from the Indonesian Women’s Committee (KPI), the commemoration of IWD will include a number of different activities aside from peaceful actions. “We will hold a series of activities in commemorating International Women’s Day from March 8 until late March”, said Rahayu.

This will include radio talk shows, a peaceful action in Pidie on March 10, a public dialogue with policy makers and an Acehnese arts performance. Radio advertisements on the protection of women in Islam will also be aired in Banda Aceh, South Aceh, West Aceh, Sigli, Bireuen, North Aceh and East Aceh on March 21.

The following day a workshop will be held on the theme of rehabilitation for victims of sexual crimes and the launch of a comic on the protection of women in Islam on March 31. (Metro TV/M 11/detikcom/Ant/g)

[Abridged translation by James Balowski from a Sinar Indonesia report covering IWD commemorations in Aceh, Jakarta, Medan and Yogyakarta.]