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First Steering Committee Meeting of the Council of Europe Project “Combatting violence against women in Ukraine” (COVAW)

Kyiv 03/05/2021
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First Steering Committee Meeting of the Council of Europe Project “Combatting violence against women in Ukraine” (COVAW)

The Steering Committee meeting held online on 29 April 2021 was attended by the Ministry of Social Policy of Ukraine, the Government Commissioner on Gender Policy and the Office of Vice Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration of Ukraine. Other project stakeholders working in the area of combatting violence against women and domestic violence, including representatives of professional associations, regional and local self-governance bodies, civil society organizations and media attended the meeting as observers.

Mr Steen Norlov, the Head of the Council of Europe Office in Ukraine highlighted that promoting gender equality is a priority for the Council of Europe in Ukraine, and that commitment to working on gender equality is highlighted in the 2018-2022 Council of Europe Action Plan for Ukraine.

Ms Olga Revuk, Deputy Minister of Social Policy of Ukraine, stressed the importance of continued cooperation between the Ministry of Social Policy and the Council of Europe, which brings valuable expertise and support in the process of preventing and combatting violence against women and domestic violence in Ukraine. She stated, I would like to express my support and emphasise the timeliness and necessity of the project, as it is an effective mechanism that focuses public attention on violence against women, including domestic violence, and performs an extremely important function – it provides the population with information, a key element that counteracts and combats this phenomenon. Another function of the COVAW project is that it will significantly increase the level of state policy in the field of combating and combating various forms of violence through the development and improvement of legislation in this area”.

Ms Kateryna Levchenko, Government Commissioner for Gender Equality Policy expressed hope that the Project will contribute to further efforts to bring Ukraine closer to ratification of the Istanbul Convention.

“We are hopeful your project will lead to transformative results in the field of violence against women”, said Mr Dmytro Kaplun, Deputy Head of the Office of the Vice Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration.

The project “Combating violence against women in Ukraine” (COVAW)’s main components, objectives and plan of activities were presented and agreed upon. The two components of COVAW – awareness raising and legislative frameworks – provide a double level of support to Ukraine in preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence in line with the standards of the Istanbul Convention. The hashtag #CoeCOVAW was introduced to consolidate social media posts on the project. The project started in January 2021 and will be implemented through December 2022.