Target: King Khalid Charitable Foundation, Saudi Arabia’s Council of Ministers
Goal: Commend Saudi Arabia’s Council of Ministers for passing a historic anti-domestic abuse law
Saudi Arabia’s Council of Ministers have passed a historic law that outlaws domestic and sexual abuse, either in private residences or in a workplace. Up until now, domestic or sexual violence towards women and children have been ignored and presented as a private matter. Now, however, anyone convicted of domestic abuse could face up to a year in jail, as well as a maximum fine equivalent to $13,000. Shelter will be provided to victims of domestic abuse, and anyone who reports domestic abuse will receive identity protection. Domestic and sexual violence should not be tolerated and brushed off; we should commend Saudi Arabia’s Council of Ministers for protecting women and children’s civil rights.
Back in May 2013, Saudi Arabia’s first anti-domestic abuse advert was released to the public. The advert consisted of a close-up of a Saudi woman wearing her face-covering niqab. Only her eyes were visible, one of which was bruised. A tagline at the bottom of the advert read “Some things can’t be covered.” The anti-domestic violence campaign was backed by the King Khalid Charitable Foundation, and apparently was very successful.
While this policy is a huge step forward for the Saudi Arabian Kingdom, many basic human rights are still withheld from women in their culture. Saudi Arabia operates a ‘guardian system’ of sorts, requiring every woman to have a male guardian who holds almost all power over her decisions. If a woman in Saudi Arabia wishes to pick a place to work, travel or study, she must obtain permission from her male guardian. Even if she wishes to get married or try to obtain health care, she must receive permission. Because of this control dominance men uphold over women in Saudi Arabia, many are questioning how effective the implementation of such anti-domestic abuse law will be. Nonetheless, the act of passing such amendment shows the anti-feminist mindset is beginning to shift.
By signing the petition below, you will be showing your support for Saudi Arabia’s recent change of heart. Hundreds of cases of domestic violence are reported annually in Saudi Arabia, but now, the Kingdom’s people are waking up. Hopefully, many lives will be protected from such horrors, or at the very least, legally dealt with.
Dear Council Ministers,
I am writing to you today in regard to your decision to ban domestic violence. Those convicted of domestic or sexual violence could spend a maximum of one year in prison and receive a fine up to 50,000 riyal, or $13,000 dollars. Adding a criminal penalty to domestic abuse directed toward women and children will better deter troubled people from acting out in such manner.
Thank you for making historic strides in women’s and children’s rights. Many lives will be positively impacted by your decision.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: minxin76 via Flickr