Press Release Archives - CREAWKENYA

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July 7, 2022by CREAW

 

 

MEDIA STATEMENTState Obligation To Protect Rape Survivors – July 2022 

For Immediate ReleaseLitigation on Failure of State to Fulfil its Due Diligence Obligation to Investigate Sexual Offences: Unconstitutionality of Out of Court Settlements Initiated by State ActorsNairobi, KenyaYesterday, 5th July 2022, the Centre for Rights Education & Awareness (CREAW) and IW, a rape  survivor, appeared before  the Constitutional and Human Rights Division of the High Court of Kenya, HCCHR PET E416/2021 – IW & Centre for Rights Education & Awareness (CREAW) vs the Attorney General, Inspector General of Police and others. The complainants seek to hold the state accountable for the failure to fulfil its obligations to investigate, prosecute and punish perpetrators of violence against women. In particular, this case seeks to address a common but understated challenge in the criminal justice system where survivors of sexual violence are not adequately supported by state agents but coerced into entering into settlement agreements with perpetrators. This case seeks to create a wider social impact in the criminal justice system in Kenya where out of court settlements in cases of gender- based violence are rampant. Of specific concern is the role that State actors such as the police play in propagating these out of court settlements which empower perpetrators of violence and leave the victim/survivor grappling with the aftermath of the violence. This creates a culture of rape and impunity in the society. In our submissions, we set out the core components of an effective investigation and standards the role of the police in protecting victims of violence in the criminal justice system.  We submitted that the investigation by the police in this case did not meet the threshold for a proper investigation.  In response to the Attorney General’s argument that the Inspector General of Police cannot be held liable for the actions of the investigating officer, we argued that the Inspector General of Police can be held accountable for the actions of the police officers who act in their capacity as a police officer and employees of the National Police Service.The judgment will be issued on 17th November 2022 before Hon. Justice Mrima.

The applicants were represented by Winfred Odali who is an alumni of ISLA’s Feminist Litigation Network. The Initiative for Strategic Litigation in Africa (ISLA) is acting as advisor to counsel. ISLA’s Feminist Litigation Network (FLN) aims to develop a pool of African feminist strategic litigators. ISLA achieves this by investing in partner organisations and a raft of capacity strengthening activities such as the strategic litigation institute. She works as a Strategic Litigation Advocate in CREAW where she is steadily developing a portfolio of cases to hold the state accountable for the failure to protect women from violence, among others. This was her maiden appearance before the Constitutional Division.Join the conversation on social media by following:#EndImpunityforVAW#EndVAW For further enquiries kindly contact:Sibongile NdasheISLA Acting Litigation Director[email protected]
Winfred OdaliCREAW Strategic Litigation Advocate[email protected]

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June 15, 2022by CREAW

Date: June 15, 2022

Civil Society Organisations recognized for their efforts in gender quality

The Centre for Rights, Education and Awareness was on Tuesday, 14 June, recognized by the Gender Is My Agenda Campaign Network with the Civil Society Award at the State House. This award was a recognition for the work of civil society organisations towards gender equality and development. It was one of the awards complementing the Africa Gender Award 2022, that was presented to H.E President Uhuru Kenyatta on the same day. Also awarded was the Kenya Private Sector Alliance which received the Private Sector Award.

The award serves as a mechanism to monitor and reward an African Head of State or Government who has demonstrated outstanding achievement in promoting gender equality and development within the thematic areas of the African Union’s Solemn Declaration on Gender Equality. Kenya has achieved eleven out of twelve operative articles of the Solemn Declaration on Gender Equality in Africa. The award is based on three thematic indices namely HIV Index, Education Index and Gender Parity Index.

HE President Uhuru acknowledged that it took a multi sectoral collaboration with the civil societies and the private sector to achieve the gains that Kenya has had over the past one year.

“CREAW would not have been able to do our work were it not for the enabling environment created by Cabinet Secretary Prof Margaret Kobia which has opened doors for the civil society to work with the government,” Executive Director of CREAW Wangechi Wachira stated.

To advance gender equality and effectively influence policy change, CREAW continues to work collaboratively with both state and non-state actors. In working with the government , CREAW is a member of the National Advisory Committee on Generation Equality Forum to promote accountability to the bold commitments made. CREAW is also a member of the National Steering committee of Policare to ensure the actualization of the integrated response to Gender based violence (GBV). At the judiciary, CREAW is a member of the National Council on the Administration of Justice working committee set to review the Sexual Offences Act and other related GBV laws to enhance access to justice. Additionally, CREAW works collaboratively with Parliament through KEWOPA on legislative work. At the county level, CREAW is a member of various  Gender Sector Working Groups  and Court Users Committee in more than 10 counties.

ENDS


 

About the Centre for Rights Education and Awareness

CREAW envisions a just society where women and girls enjoy full rights and live in dignity. We believe in the equality of rights, with empowerment and justice made available for every woman and girl. We stand for, ensuring women and girls have Power, Voice and Agency. For more information on CREAW, please visit: www.creawkenya.org.

Contact

Njambi Mungai – 0710778890  ([email protected])


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April 28, 2021by CREAW

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
28 April 2021

#Sitanyamazishwa: Constitutional Petition in the Employment and Labour Relations Court seeking redress for the violation of a former employee’s constitutional rights and sexual harassment

On 28 April 2021, the Centre for Rights Education and Awareness (CREAW) and the Initiative for Strategic Litigation in Africa have filed a petition for redress against RILEY SERVICES LTD to seek amends for violation of her Constitutional rights and sexual harassment.

Case background

In February 2018, a woman who was working as a security guard at Riley Security Services was sexually harassed by a senior manager in the building where she was assigned to guard. Riley Security Services was a service provider assigned to the Harambee Sacco Plaza. She reported the incident to the Head of Security in the building who advised her to report to her employer and the police. She reported the matter to the police who kept the matter pending under investigation. She further reported the incident to her employer who did not take any steps to provide amends for the violation she had endured. She was subsequently moved from her workplace, together with all the guards she was supervising, and was assigned administrative duties and her salary was reduced.  Despite various pleas for redress, the employer only frustrated her and eventually asked her to leave employment.

Argument summary

A Constitutional Petition has been brought forward in the Employment and Labour Relations Court seeking redress for the violation of her rights. She seeks the horizontal application of her constitutional rights against her employer. Furthermore, the application seeks to expand the applicability of the law on sexual harassment to other persons within the employer’s control, even if not its employees. The petition seeks to ask the court to determine whether the employer and the alleged perpetrator failed to protect and uphold employee’s fundamental rights particularly, the right to equality and freedom from discrimination, right to human dignity, right to fair labour practices, and the right to fair administrative action.

“We believe that this case is not just about the violation of the client’s human rights but about the fiduciary responsibility of organisation’s to ensure the safety of their employees from sexual harassment from their clients”, said Advocate Beatrice Njeri

Case practice

The Initiative for Strategic Litigation in Africa (ISLA) is acting as advisors to counsel to the Centre for Rights Education and Awareness (CREAW) as part of the women’s economic and social rights programmatic intervention. CREAW is a national feminist women’s rights Non-Governmental Organization whose vision is to contribute to a just society where women and girls enjoy their full rights and live in dignity. Their mission is to champion, expand and actualize women’s and girls’ rights and social justice. In all proceedings, ISLA and CREAW will be represented by Advocate Beatrice Njeri who will be working with an alumnus of ISLA’s Feminist Litigation Network (FLN) Advocate Carolene Kituku. The case will be filed on Wednesday, 28 April 2021 in the Court of Kenya at the Nairobi Milimani Law Courts.

ends.

Join the conversation on social media by following:

Twitter: @ISLAfrica @CREAWKENYA
Facebook: @ISLAfrica @CREAWKENYA

Hashtag: #Sitanyamazishwa #WhoProtectsUs

 

For further enquiries kindly contact:

Beatrice Njeri
Tel: +254 720 230 206
Email: [email protected]

Carolene Kituku
Counsel for ISLA and CREAW
Tel: +254 71 026 1408
Email: [email protected]

Christine Ogutu
Communications Officer  CREAW).
Cell: +254 724 961 386
Email: [email protected]

#Sitanyamazishwa #WhoProtectsUs



April 7, 2021by CREAW

One week ago, the public were shocked by the disdainful comments made by former Homeboyz Radio Station presenters during a breakfast show aired on 25th of March, 2021. The comments condoned gender-based violence and placed the survivor at fault.

When a woman, or indeed, any other person survives gender-based violence, they expect empathy and justice and not blame, shame and stigma meant to further re-traumatize and stifle their voices into silence. Public broadcasting stations must not be used as a platform to victim shame. We call on Home Boyz and all broadcasting stations to take note of the Constitutional provision that requires the media to be responsible in their coverage of matters that touch on the safety, security and wellbeing of women and girls.

In the wake of the Home Boyz experience, we demand that all media houses adopt gender and zero violence tolerance policies that categorically provide for redress of violations, address gender biases and provide for balanced news reportage and media content.

Homeboyz situation is not an isolated case. In recent times sexism and misogynistic conversations have openly supported, made jokes, or sensationalized violence against women and girls, often diverting public attention from the perpetrators of such acts or not holding them accountable for their actions. Such actions only serve to perpetuate misogyny and discourages many victims from reporting cases of violence out of fear that they might be blamed for the harm meted on them or further victimized.

Any actions that promote or justify sexual violence do not stem sexual harassment and violence nationally. The mass media must play its role in eradicating the silent pandemic. During the corona pandemic, GBV cases have increased by 42 per cent. In this country, 47 per cent of women compared to three per cent men experience some form of Gender Based Violence. This violence also costs Kenya at Ksh 29 billion annually.
While supporting the rapid actions taken by the East African Breweries, Radio Africa Group management and the Communication Authority of Kenya, we urge the mass media industry to take up their critical and powerful role of promoting and protecting human rights.

Further, we call upon the media industry to:

  1. Put in place clear policies and guidelines for reporting sexual, gender and human rights violations. Where these are already in place, they should be implemented, and all members of staff made aware that they exist;
  2. Put in place accountability frameworks that address perpetrators and protect victims.
  3. Institutionalize strong reporting mechanisms devoid of victimization;
  4. Allocate sufficient resources to train/orient media employees on gender sensitive reporting, human rights and on the implications of GBV;

We stand ready to work with media houses in Kenya to boost their responsibility in reporting on human rights violations and sensitize presenters/hosts on gender responsive broadcasting. We note that the issues surrounding the incident are layered and will require numerous actors to address and this, therefore, offers an impetus for accelerated efforts on the same.

This statement has been issued by four human rights organizations namely Coalition on Violence Against Women (COVAW), Amnesty International Kenya, Association of Media Women in Kenya (AMWIK) and the Center for Rights Education and Awareness (CREAW).

COVAW is an organization that focuses on influencing sustained engagement on violations conducted against women and girls in Kenya, with a focus on Gender Based Violence.

Amnesty International Kenya is an organization dedicated to securing human rights all over the world. Amnesty International Kenya works to protect people wherever justice, freedom, truth, and dignity are denied.

AMWIK is a non-profit membership organization for women journalists and communicators in Kenya. AMWIK is committed to enhancing the status of women in Kenya and Africa. AMWIK seeks to use the media to promote an informed and gender responsive society through a professional and transformative media in Kenya and Africa.

CREAW is a duly registered, national feminist women’s rights non-governmental organization whose vision is a just society where women and girls enjoy full rights and live in dignity.

Ms Wairimu Munyinyi Wahome – COVAW
Dr Dorothy Njoroge – AMWIK
Ms. Wangechi Wachira – CREAW
Mr Irungu Houghton – AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL KENYA

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March 19, 2021by CREAW

We are deeply appalled by the information going round on social media platforms about sexual assault and the gruesome murder of Velvine Nungari Kinyanjui allegedly by one Anthony Njenga Murimi. Our deepest condolences to Velvine’s family and friends.

As an organization that has committed itself to the promotion of the rights of women and girls, the Center for Rights Education and Awareness (CREAW) notes with concern that while Velvine’s case is not an isolated one; countless number of women and girls across the country have become subjects to gender-motivated killings, sexual violence including rape, female genital mutilations, and sexual harassment in the households, communities, workplaces and by extension public spaces. As many as seven in ten women in various parts of the country report having experienced physical and/or sexual violence at some point in their lifetime, most of them at the hands of intimate partners.

Data from CREAW shows that by the end of 2020, cases of violence against women and girls across Kenya had risen by 64% amidst the pandemic. The statistics that are further affirmed by the National Crime Research Center report 2020 which recorded a 92% increase in cases of GBV between January and June 2020, compared to the same period in 2019. These statistics demonstrates that violence against women and girls continue to go unabated despite the Constitutional provisions that upholds the rights of all Kenyans, women and girls included.

We welcome the actions by the National Police Service (NPS), the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) and the Office of the Director of Criminal Investigations (ODPP) in apprehending Velvine’s alleged assailant (Anthony Njenga Murimi), however we demand that speedy investigations be done and the culprit be charged for nothing less than murder for the life of Velvine. The Judiciary should ensure that the case is heard and determined and that the perpetrator is fully made accountable for the heinous act. We shall remain vigilant until justice is done for Velvine, one life lost is one too many other lives lost in our communities. She was loved, she was cared for. We are missing a life, a sister, a daughter, a friend, stolen from our hearts and our minds. Femicide is unacceptable!

In all, CREAW stands in solidarity with all survivors and victims of femicide and other forms of GBV and call on the government to break their silence on the “shadow pandemic” and honour their obligation as outlined in the Constitution of Kenya 2010 to end violence against women and girls.

We are also cognisant that, survivors voices continue to be stifled by the patriarchal notions and societal stigma; a matter that has left many survivors wallowing in pain and hopelessness. We are calling on individuals and communities to rise beyond the gender biases, play their part and take action to liberate women and girls from all forms of violence.

End Notes

About the Center for Rights Education and Awareness

Founded in 1999, the Center for Rights Education and Awareness (CREAW) is a national feminist organization driving change for equal societies in Kenya. We place women and girls at the center of our actions to end inequality and realize social justice. We question political, social, economic, legal, cultural and religious structures that silences the voices and agency of women and girls in Kenya.

CREAW envisions a just society where women and girls enjoy full rights and live in dignity. We believe in the equality of rights, with empowerment and justice made available for every woman and girl. We stand for, ensuring women and girls have Power, Voice and Agency. For more information on CREAW, please visit: www.creawkenya.org

For more information please contact [email protected] or call 0720-357-664.


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March 8, 2021by CREAW

For Immediate Release 

 Nairobi, Kenya 

 8 March 2021  

 The theme of this year’s International Day, Women in Leadership: Achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world, recognizes the importance of enabling women and girls to participate fully in leadership and decision-making. 

 But progress towards this goal is undermined by gender-based violence. Data from CREAW shows that by the end of 2020, cases of violence against women and girls in across the 10 counties in Kenya had risen by 64% The National Crime Research Center report 2020 shows a 92% increase in cases of Gender Based Violence between January and June 2020compared to the same period in 2019. 

 With support from the Mastercard Foundation, the Center for Rights Education and Awareness (CREAW), GROOTS Kenya, and the Center for Collaborative Gender and Development (CCGD) have been working to address the challenge by providing access to legal aid, psycho-social support, and shelters, as well as connecting women to economic opportunities. To date 10,019 women have received direct services 

Still, much remains to be done. Too many women continue to lack access to these types of services, often due to socio-cultural barriers. 
 “As a consortium  we recognise that almost a year after Kenya declared it’s first case of the Coronavirus, countless number of women and girls continue to be disproportionately affected by the increasing cases of GBV, loss of income and unequal domestic caregiving as they bear the brunt of harsh economic and social fallout during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Wangechi Wachira, the Executive Director CREAW 

 Treach additional womenthe consortium will soon be launching the Jasiri Fund, the first of its kind in Kenya, to provide financial support to survivors of GBV. The Jasiri Fund, part of the Mastercard Foundation COVID-19 Recovery Response and Resillience program, is being piloted in Nairobi, Mombasa, Kiambu, Kakamega, Busia, Kwale, Kilifi, Tana River, Kajiado and Mandera counties. It will provide affordable business loans of up to Ksh 500,000 to 1000 women and girls who are survivors of GBV. The loans are expected to enable women  to recover and build their economic ventures beyond the pandemic—giving them the freedom and opportunity to take up the mantle of leadership  

 “A desirable society is where young girls and women enjoy safe spaces and are part of decision making and development in their society,” said Santa Kagendo, Gender Champion. 

 End Notes 

 About the Center for Rights Education and Awareness   

 Founded in 1999, the Center for Rights Education and Awareness (CREAW) is a national feminist organization driving change for equal societies in Kenya. We place women and girls at the center of our actions to end inequality and realize social justice. We question political, social, economic, legal, cultural and religious structures that silences the voices and agency of women and girls in Kenya.  

 CREAW envisions a just society where women and girls enjoy full rights and live in dignity. We believe in the equality of rights, with empowerment and justice made available for every woman and girl. We stand for, ensuring women and girls have Power, Voice and Agency. For more information on CREAW, please visit: www.creawkenya.org 

About the Center for Collaborative Gender and Development  

Collaborative Center for Gender Development (CCGD) was established in 1996 by a small group of academics, researchers and development experts to build capacity in gender responsive planning, advocacy and programming. CCGD has grown into a dependable policy research and advocacy resource organization with program presence at county, national and regional levels. CCGD seeks to promote gender responsive capacity building and institutional development of all sectors in planning, budgeting, programming, implementation, monitoring and evaluation. For more information on CCGD, please visit: www.ccgdcentre.org 

About GROOTs Kenya  

GROOTS Kenya Association is a duly registered under section 10 of the Societies Act in Kenya as an association of 3,500 community-based organizations (CBOs) that are women led. GROOTS Kenya was formed in 1995 as a response to the inadequate visibility of grassroots women in development and decision-making forums that directly impact on them and their communities. GROOTS Kenya’s mission is to facilitate grassroots women and girls effective engagement in development through movement building, leadership and advocacy. For more information on GROOTS Kenya, please visit: www.grootskenya.org 

About the Mastercard Foundation 

The Mastercard Foundation works with visionary organizations to enable young people in Africa and in Indigenous communities in Canada to access dignified and fulfilling work.  It is one of the largest, private foundations in the world with a mission to advance learning and promote financial inclusion to create an inclusive and equitable world. The Foundation was created by Mastercard in 2006 as an independent organization with its own Board of Directors and management. For more information on the Foundation, please visit: www.mastercardfdn.org 

 

For more information please contact: 

Center for Rights Education and Awareness   

Christine Ogutu 

Communication Officer 

0724961386, [email protected] 

 

GROOTs Kenya 

Emily Maranga 

Project Manager 

0722837840, [email protected] 

 

Center for Collaborative Gender and Development 

Christine Atito 

Communications Assistant 

0703790950, [email protected] 

 

Mastercard Foundation 

Helen White  

Strategy Lead, Program Communications 

+27 76 166 5372, [email protected]