Experts for improving services of gender-based violence helplines – 24 May 2023

BHURBAN: A two-day conference organised organised by the human rights ministry and the National Commission on Status of Women (NCSW) has stressed on the importance of better coordination and improving the service quality of gender-based violence (GBV) helplines in the country.

`Gender-based violence is often underreported and unrecognised and helplines working to respond to such brutalities and injustices meted out to survivors, should be well collaborated, NCSW Chairperson Nilofar Bakhtiar said in the inaugural session.

The ministry and the NCSW organised the conference in collaboration with the United Nations Population Fund and Rozan.

The conference brought together managers and staff from helplines including the 1043 helpline, 1737 and Pucaar 15f r o m P u n j a b, 1089 from Balochistan, Bolo helpline 080022227 from K h y b e rPakhtunkhwa and 1094 from Sindh to learn and share regional experiences and support operations.

Ms Bakhtiar said helplines working in allprovincesand atthefederallevel must work together to respond to gender-based violence by providing services to survivors through strong collaboration in emergencies.

`My commission has been working on a national action plan for GBV issues so these helplines could work together under standard indicators, data and tools,` she said.

Representatives of UNFPA, UKAID and the High Commission of Canada also participated in the conference to pledge their support in establishing collaboration among helplines.

Mohammad Arif, director, Ministry of Human Rights reaffirmed the commitment of the ministry to protect and uphold human rights, especially of women and girls.

The participants were of the view that various emergency and genderbased violence helplines were operational and their staff in most cases were the first responders to guide and link survivors. They also emphasised that specialised training for the social welfare workforce responding to GBV cases is reinforced.

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