Essay on Violence against Women and Girls and Public Health

Published: 2021-06-30 03:01:15
925 words
4 pages
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University of California, Santa Barbara
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Violence against women and girls should be given the same attention to infectious disease in the public health. The number of deaths and injuries emanating from violence perpetrated by men is relatively high for this technological era such that there is a need for public policies, programs, and interventions aimed at alleviating the adverse outcomes. The mental and physical implications of abuse on women and girls transcend culture and social class making women victims of something that should be addressed. Through the use of previous research work, it is evident that violence occurs in different forms including stalking, sexual harassment, rape and domestic violence (Hlavka, 2014). Additionally, the economic implication on the public of abuse is high and should there be interventions to address this challenge, then resources currently used would be allocated to other sectors of public health like research. Notably, the effect of violence broadly affects the society, families, health care system, industries, and businesses because victims of violence and abuse find themselves in all circles of life in the society.

Addressing violence against women is fundamental for the achievement of the millennium development goals globally those of women empowerment and gender inequality as suggested by Garcia-Moreno, and Watts (2011). This form of violence is the highest form of exploitation of human beings by their fellow human beings. It is the highest form of the violation of human rights not to mention it is shameful and pervasive. It denies women an opportunity to act as human equals by placing them as victims of domineering male society. Although in the paper it is presented as men and women being equal, in practice the case is different. Men at times, place women secondary and victimize them solely based on their biological makeup. Such unequal treatment occurs in workplaces when men make sexual advances to women for them to secure working opportunities. The sad bit is that despite the knowledge of the need to address that area, public policies are still inadequate and women and girls continue to suffer in the hands of men.

Further, the issue of violence should be given special attention because of the consequences of neglecting that aspect in interventions. It is alarming that women can go to the extent of death from domestic violence by their spouses. Notably, men who directly kill their spouses or partners do not do so just in one instance but a series of signs and actions that seemingly can lead to death. However, because of lack of adequate policies and systems in place that can address womens needs, such women endure through only for them to lose their lives through homicide (Garcia-Moreno, and Watts 2011). Additionally, women are discouraged and lose the morale to seek external interventions because of the evidence of the long processes and time taken for justice to be granted. Some women, as victims die from morbidity factors associated with violence. For example, the mental trauma, sexual, physical and reproductive outcomes combined can lead to death, in the long run as noted by Dillon, Hussain, Loxton, and Rahman, (2013). Women are victims of death when men can have multiple sexual partners and engage in risky sexual behaviors resulting in the contraction of HIV/AIDS which eventually will lead to the death of the victims. Notably, violence is normally associated with smoking and substance abuse, and when it occurs during pregnancy, it has been linked with low birth weight and high infant mortality as highlighted by Garcia-Moreno, and Watts (2011).

Women constitute a large fragment of the population, and when they are protected and empowered, great economic impacts can be realized. However, in most nations, the case is the opposite. IN Australia for instance, violence against women was estimated to form about 8% of the total disease burden among women within the reproductive bracket with obesity, high blood pressure and tobacco use being primary factors as argued out by Garcia-Moreno, and Watts (2011). Additionally, in Mexico City, intimate partner violence and rape have been cited as the third most causes of mortality and morbidity. In fact, it accounts for about 5.6 percent of years lost in disability-adjusted life.

The costs of violence against women have huge economic impacts. The health care costs, the time that is used reporting the matter and carrying out the investigation and prosecution of the victims is a lot. Further, it limits the extent to which women can make an economic impact. It constrains poverty reduction because when women face violence and are stigmatized, it reduces their active participation in the productive employment. It also undermines the ability of girls to access quality education. The fear of violence has been seen as a contributory factor to low school enrolment for the girls. Moreover, children from homes that experience domestic violence are less likely to have access to quality education and can be affected psychologically affecting their learning process. Women fear to be victimized that is why the reporting rate is a bit low. Further, some communities culture perceive violence against as something that is normal, and it would be viewed as a taboo to report such matters. However, a lot can still be done to improve the situation even in marginalized communities.


Dillon, G., Hussain, R., Loxton, D., & Rahman, S. (2013). Mental and physical health and intimate partner violence against women: A review of the literature. International journal of family medicine, 2013.

Garcia-Moreno, C., & Watts, C. (2011). Violence against women: an urgent public health priority. Bulletin of the World Health Organization, 89(1), 2-2.

Hlavka, H. R. (2014). Normalizing sexual violence: Young women account for harassment and abuse. Gender & Society, 28(3), 337-358.

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