Rape, a single word with devastating impact that spans decades, even generations.
It destroys bodies and minds and puts peace in jeopardy.
When left unpunished or trivialized, it creates a pervasive culture where sexual violence is normalized, women and girls are undervalued, and entire communities and nations are left fractured.
Too many of us fail to name or challenge the rape culture that surrounds us.
Through words, actions and inactions; discriminatory laws or leniency towards perpetrators; through the media we consume, jokes we laugh at, and attitudes we do not question, we become part of a culture that allows rape to continue.
Although in recent years, the voices of activists and survivors through movements such as #MeToo, #TimesUp, #Niunamenos, #NotOneMore, #BalanceTonPorc, have reached a crescendo that cannot be silenced or ignored, violence against women and girls continues in every country.
One in three women are impacted by this violence; 15 million adolescent girls worldwide have experienced forced sex.
For the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence, from 25 November to 10 December, and under the umbrella of the Generation Equality campaign to mark the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, UN Secretary-General’s UNiTE by 2030 to End Violence against Women campaign is calling upon people from all walks of life, across generations, to take our boldest stand yet against rape.