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Second national survey on women's health and life experiences launched

Released at: 18:22, 28/01/2018

Second national survey on women's health and life experiences launched

Photo: Embassy of Australia

Survey launched to protect Vietnamese women's rights.

by Le Diem

A launch workshop for the second national survey on women’s health and life experience, funded by the Australian Embassy in Vietnam, was held on January 25 in Hanoi by the Ministry of Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs (MoLISA) in cooperation with the General Statistics Office (GSO) and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) in Vietnam.

In attendance were Mr. Pham Ngoc Tien, Director of the Gender Equality Department at MoLISA, H.E. Craig Chittick, Australian Ambassador to Vietnam, and Ms. Astrid Bant from UNFPA, together with representatives from MoLISA, the GSO, other line ministries, northern provinces, UN agencies, development partners, and international and local NGOs.

Violence against women and girls (VAWG) is a serious human rights violation and has harmful socioeconomic consequences. According to the National Survey on Violence Against Women in Vietnam, conducted by the GSO and supported by the UN in Vietnam, in 2010, 58 per cent of women aged from 18-60 who are or have been married have experienced violence at least once in their lives. Of huge concern is that up to 87 per cent of women suffering from violence do not seek any support from public service providers. The study confirmed that violence against women in Vietnam is a serious problem. This figure, however, is only for violence against women within the family setting.

Vietnam made good progress in its gender equality targets under Millennium Development Goal 3. The national legal framework for gender equality and women’s empowerment has been strengthened. However, the prevalence of VAWG remains high and poorly addressed. The study will therefore allow for reliable estimates to be made key indicators on violence against women and girls for six economic-geographical regions, for urban and rural areas, for Kinh and non-Kinh populations, and for the country as a whole.

“In order to develop appropriate, effective, and practical policies, apart from staff capacity we need reliable data and information as evidence for guiding and building laws and policies,” Mr. Tien told the launch. “I also hope that data collected from the survey will continue to be further analyzed to understand the different effects of violence on the country’s socioeconomic development. The data collected will be very helpful for policymakers, programmers at national and provincial levels, government agencies, social organizations, services providers for survivors, communities, and people in society.”

“Data on women and girls’ experience of violence is the critical first step in providing a just and adequate response to the problem,” said Ambassador Chittick. “Most importantly, it also shows women and girls that we believe them and that we have the courage to address this hidden harm.”

“We are very happy to collaborate with the Australian Embassy to support Vietnam in conducting the second national survey on women’s health and life experiences,” said Ms. Bant. “I hope this study will help us collect data and measure the impact of joint efforts in the last decade on ending violence against women and girls. Let’s work together towards a Vietnam where no woman should have to live in fear, no matter where she is, and where all women are treated with dignity and respect.” 

With technical assistance from UNFPA in Vietnam, this second national survey will be implemented by the GSO in March. MoLISA will be the leading agency in coordinating the survey and in disseminating the results, in early 2019, and in advocating the use of the data in the development, implementation, and monitoring of VAWG-related programs and policies in Vietnam.

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