JDN registers 80 females experiencing sexual harassment in the last two years

JDN registers 80 females experiencing sexual harassment in the last two years

Photo Tatoli/Jose De Sa

DILI, 13 december 2022 (TATOLI) – The Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) Youth for Development, conducted a case study in Dili for two years. The results show that 80 young women are victims of sexual harassment in public spaces, at school, and home.

The President of JDN, Belizia Maria Mesquita Dias, said that several young Timorese women experienced various types of sexual harassment, such as verbal sexual harassment, insults, threats, ridicule, body touching, and messages of a sexual nature on social media.

The coordinator of the anti-sexual harassment program was very concerned because in Timor-Leste verbal sexual harassment was often considered normal, even though it was classified as sexual violence, stating that “most of the victims felt afraid and do not reach the police or the relevant authorities,” She told Tatoli, in Metiaut, Dili.

Between 2019 and 2022, the organization is training several young women to become activists against sexual harassment. JDN members also work together to prevent and combat sexual harassment and defend women’s rights.

“Most of the victims decide to become activists to spread information to their families and friends in the community about sexual harassment,” She said.

From 2018 to 2019, JDN organized more than 189 women’s activities towards advocacy training against sexual harassment in Dili, Turiscai, and Manufahi, of which 100 women have acquired relevant knowledge on this issue.

During 2019 and 2020, the organization trained a team of 30 young women to act as activists against sexual harassment and educated 195 young women about sexual harassment laws and skills to deal with different harassment situations.

In 2021, JDN is promoting ten seminars on education, information, and strategies for young women to deal with sexual harassment and gender equality.

Seminar on gender education, focused on laws and policies that prevail in Timor-Leste and United Nations Convention on women’s rights and sustainable development goals, to improve women’s conditions and rights.

JDN, which was founded by Timorese youth between the ages of 17 and 24, is involved in discussions and initiatives to provide the support that increases family economic independence.

In early 2014, twelve Timorese youths began meeting to understand youth perspectives on unemployment and possible solutions.

Since then, with the help of two advisors from Australia, JDN has grown into a national Non-Governmental Organisation, registered with the Timor-Leste NGO Forum (FONGTIL) and the Ministry of Justice, and continuously working to develop the necessary skills for the achievement of the o



Journalist: Jose De Sa

Editor: Nelia B.


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