Naomi Kitahara, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Representative in Vietnam, has called for joint efforts to ensure that all women and children in Vietnam, including the most vulnerable groups, can live a life free of violence.
Kitahara made the appeal at a workshop jointly held by the Vietnamese Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the UNFPA in Hanoi on December 3, which looked into Vietnam’s draft Law on Domestic Violence Prevention and Control (amended).
She affirmed the UNFPA’s support for Vietnam’s action month for gender equality, and prevention and response to gender-based violence.
In her remarks, Deputy Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Trinh Thi Thuy said the ministry is pooling opinions on the draft law, adding that the amendment aims to consolidate institutions on domestic violence prevention and control.
Delegates at the workshop shared the view that the National Assembly’s adoption of the law in 2007 mirrors Vietnam’s strong commitments and great efforts in handling domestic violence, especially violence against women and children.
The law has created a healthy legal corridor for the development and the implementation of many policies and measures against domestic violence over the past two decades, they said.
According to a study conducted in 2019, nearly two-thirds (62.9%) of Vietnamese women experienced at least one or more types of violence in their lifetime by their husband.
Half of women who experienced violence by husbands had never told anyone. Almost all women (90.4%) who experienced physical and/or sexual violence from husbands did not seek any help from formal service providers.
Violence against women has serious consequences on economic development, as well as physical and mental health. It is costing Vietnam’s national economy the equivalent of 1.8% of GDP.