Patrick Grady from Glasgow has pledged to support Dr Eilidh Whiteford MPs Private Member’s Bill (PMB) which would require the UK Government to legally commit to providing a better framework for addressing violence against women and girls, by making the Istanbul Convention law in the UK - if successful. Dr Eilidh Whiteford MP will bring to the floor of the House, for its Second Reading, her Private Members’ Bill urging the UK Government to ratify the Istanbul Convention on the 16th of December.
This legislation requires the UK to take measures to prevent violence against women, protect women experiencing violence, and prosecute perpetrators and is needed because on average in Scotland in 2014/15, 1,797 rapes and 104 attempted rapes and 59,882 incidents of domestic abuse were recorded by the police.
Patrick Grady MP for Glasgow North said: "Violence against women and girls in the UK, and anywhere else in the world, in abhorrent. No women should have to face such trauma, and further injutice with a lack of legal protection. If the UK Government is serious about ending violence against women and girls, then it's imperative that they ratify the Istandbul Convention."
UN Women have hailed the Istanbul Convention a “gold-standard” for tackling violence against women, and Human Rights Watch called it “ground breaking” – ratifying this convention will mean a lasting national commitment to tackling violence against women and girls. This Bill has cross party support and if it becomes law would see the UK take a proud commitment to ending gender based violence and taking the next steps in securing a safe future for women and girls.
Jenn Selby, a campaigner and survivor said: “When I think of all the brave women I've met on my way through the system, I wonder how many of them made it. The current legal framework did more to see our perpetrators walk free than to keep us alive. This convention would end this.”
Rachel Nye, Co-director of the campaign, says: “We need a strategic plan for addressing violence against women and girls, and the Istanbul Convention has already done the strategizing. We just need to put it into practice.”