Tirane, 7 December 2017– Tirana Clock Tower will lit up orange as part of a global campaign to commemorate 16 Days of Activism against gender based violence. Orange is one of the official colors of the UN Secretary General UNiTE campaign and in the context of its global advocacy, is used as a symbol of a brighter future, free from violence against women and girls.
The Mayor of Tirana, Erion Veliaj, the Minister of Health and Social Protection, Ogerta Manastirliu, the UN Resident Coordinator and UN Women Country representative will turn on the lights of the Tirana Clock Tower.
Tirana Clock Tower is one among hundreds of iconic monuments, buildings, museums, bridges and other landmarks, which will be lit up in orange around the world during the 16-days of activism this year.
Every woman and girl has the right to live her life without the threat of violence. Yet, globally one in three women has experienced physical and/or sexual violence at some point in her lifetime while in Albania three in five women or almost 60%.
UN agencies in Albania – mainly, the UN Women, UN Development Programme (UNDP), and the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) under Delivering as One with additional support from the Government of Sweden, are supporting the Albanian government to improve and implement policies and legal framework , develop coordinated multi-disciplinary response and referral mechanisms, and promote public awareness on violence against women.
In this broad effort to end violence against women and girls, we see men as playing a vital role in bringing change. Challenging sexism, male dominance and male privilege as society’s norm starts with modeling positive masculinities. Parents can instill principles of equality, rights and respect as they raise their sons ; and men can call out their peers for the behaviours that are now being understood as the unacceptable tip of the harassment iceberg.
At the heart of this year’s 16 days of activism theme of ‘leaving no one behind’, is leaving no one out. This means bringing women and girls as equals into everything that concerns them, and planning solutions to end violence with those who have been previously dismissed, sidelined or excluded.
Tonight, as Tirana clock tower is lightened up in orange we remain hopeful to stop violence against women and girls, make our cities, workplaces and communities safer for them and work together to end discrimination, restore human rights and dignity, and leave no one behind.