March 27, 2018
Written by Quentin Wodon and Paula Tavares, World Bank
This blog was originally posted on the Global Partnership for Education website. World Bank contributed to this article.
Laws are important to provide women with legal protection against domestic violence and sexual harassment and signal commitment to achieving the Sustainable Development Goal target of ending all forms of violence and harmful practices against women and girls by 2030.
Every two years, the World Bank publishes data on these and other laws protecting women from violence as part of its Women, Business and the Law series of reports. The next report and detailed country level data are due to come out in a matter of weeks, but some aggregate results are already available and they are sobering.
More laws on the books, but still not enough protection
A recent note funded in part by the Global Partnership for Education provides an analysis of global and regional trends in legal protection for women against domestic violence and sexual harassment. The analysis relies on data from 2013 to 2017 on binding laws and regulations applicable in 141 countries. While recognizing the often large gap between the law and practice, the comparative assessment of legal protection against domestic violence and sexual harassment is based on the letter of the law and not on the application or enforcement thereof.
Thumbnail image description: A student in lower secondary school open to blind students in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Thumbnail image credit: GPE/Guy Nzazi