Gender Based Violence and Femicide
By Tshepiso Aina
Founder/Executive Director TMFSA
As we celebrate International Deaf Awareness Month during this trying period occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic, I could not ignore the “second pandemic” of Gender Based Violence, the daily lot of many women experience. The spike in violence, murders and rape of women and children left me with rage and questioning the Justice System of our Country. As a woman who survived a stabbing and was left for dead 17 years ago, I am left questioning when this will end! Will it ever end?! According to President Ramaphosa, speaking on 17 June 2020, twenty-one women and children have been murdered in recent weeks. I can't help but wonder how many Deaf/ Hard of Hearing women and girl children have been and are being impacted! How many cases of rape are unreported because of lack of access to South African Sign Language Interpreting services in our Justice system? How long should this go on without justice done to both victims and perpetrators! Speeches or roundtable discussion do not make any difference to a Deaf/Hard of Hearing woman or child in Khayelitsha, Orlando East or Daveyton.
TMFSA is dedicating September to all women who have passed, who are still waiting for justice; to children who have been denied the right to have a mother. We Honor YOU, We See YOU, We Hear YOU. We will be running a campaign on our social media platforms on a weekly basis, and share information in print and South African Sign Language. Each one of us can make a difference, do your part!