HCM City suggested to become safe to women, girls hinh anh 1Illustrative Image (Source: Internet)

HCM City (VNA) – Ho Chi Minh City should take intervention measures to build itself into a safe city that prevents women and girls from sexual harassment and other forms of sexually violence in public spaces.

The suggestion was made at a seminar on designing a safe city programme held in HCM City on November 17 by UN Women in Vietnam.

Laura Capobianco, a representative from UN Women, said sexually violence against women and girls in public places is at an alarming level. Migrant, disabled and young women, lesbians, bisexuals and transgenders face a higher risk of sexual violence as they suffer from different forms of discrimination.

With the support of the municipal Department of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs, UN Women has conducted a qualitative study in District 3, Binh Thanh and Nha Be districts. The results show that migrant female workers and students are the most vulnerable to sexually harassment.

Participants suggested HCM City include the criteria of a safe city in its ongoing programme to build a civilized and modern city. It should have strict punishments on those who conduct sexually harassment, establish organisations helping women that are sexually harassed to overcome psychological shocks, as well as install alarm bells and cameras in public places.

UN Women’s Global Flagship Initiative, “Safe Cities and Safe Public Spaces,” was launched in November 2010. It is the first-ever global programme that develops, implements, and evaluates tools, policies and comprehensive approaches on the prevention of and response to sexual harassment and other forms of sexual violence against women and girls in public spaces. 

It began with founding programmes in Quito, Ecuador; Cairo, Egypt; New Delhi, India; Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea; and Kigali, Rwanda, and now spans more than 20 cities. HCM City will be the next city to implement the programme.-VNA