Gender equality - 03.03.2023
The City of Munich takes on digital violence
The high incidence of gender-based violence that girls and women encounter in face-to-face interactions translates increasingly into the digital realm. According to EU-wide surveys carried out by the EU’s Fundamental Rights Agency 33 % of women have suffered physical and/or sexual violence since the age of 15 years; and 1 in 10 women have already experienced a form of online violence from the age of 15 onwards (EIGE 2017)
Munich has been quick to recognise that as digital media and digital communication are naturally integrated into everyday life, particularly among younger people, the distinctions between digital and physical violence is becoming less pertinent.
As part of its project on digital violence, Munich is organising a series of events bringing together experts from different fields and with various approaches to the subject in order to take stock of and understand the existing forms of digital violence. The target audience includes professionals from specialised institutions in Munich, including social services, women’s shelters, schools, police and hospitals.
The experts are invited to exchange on different topics, among which an analysis of gender and violence in the digital space, legal aspects of digital violence, prevention and intervention possibilities in terms of technical aspects and in police work.
These events, which are attended by 20 to 30 professionals, offer space to explore possibilities for prevention and intervention and to identify areas for action. It also contributes to spreading knowledge and awareness of the phenomenon which is still relatively poorly understood and not adequately measured. This is what Munich is hoping to change for the better with their actions.
The next steps following the events will be to develop strategies for preventing and addressing digital violence. One possibility to be explored is the creation of a special counselling centre at the municipality. As Munich shows the way, other municipalities will hopefully soon follow and help make the digital world safer for everyone.
- City of Munich 2020-2024 Action Plan
- Dial 116 016: The EU-wide helpline for women victims of violence to be launched in April 2023
- European Parliament Research Service brief: ”Combating gender-based cyber-violence”
- European Parliament resolution of 14 December 2021 with recommendations to the Commission on combating gender-based violence: cyberviolence
2023 International Women’s Rights Day series: “Five new Charter articles illustrated through local actions”
This article is part of a series published by CEMR to celebrate 2023 International Women’s Rights Day. This series informs on impactful initiatives carried out by local and regional governments to promote gender justice. These projects embody the updated European Charter for Equality of Women and Men in Local Life as they show how five of its nine new articles can be put into practice. Together, they represent an inspiring step towards a more gender-equal Europe.
Any questions regarding the update or the actions highlighted in this series can be directed to email@example.com or the relevant national coordinator for the Charter in your country.
Gender and Diversity Officer
Tel : +32 2 500 05 49