The government should ensure that laws enacted in the country are in accordance with international treaties on human rights the country is a party to, Democratic Commission for Human Development Director Tanveer Jahan said on Wednesday.
She was speaking on the first day of a three-day training workshop on capacity-building for non-government workers and activists for protection of working women’s rights.
The workshop has been organised by the Association of Women for Awareness and Motivation (AWAM).
Mumtaz Mughal, Senior Programme Officer of Aurat Foundation, said reported crimes against women were on the rise despite some pro-women legislation. He said poor enforcement of laws was responsible for this flaw.
WISE director Bushra Khaliq highlighted the exploitation women workers suffered in the informal sector of the economy. She said there were no laws to protect the rights of these workers. She said the statistics compiled by the national institutions did not mention these workers.
HomeNet Senior Programme Officer Javed Pasha mentioned domestic work, home-based work and subsistence farming as major informal sectors where women were deprived of rights.
AWAM Director Nazia Sardar said discrimination against women and rights violations in Pakistan were frequently justified using stereotypes arguing for gender inequality.
She said besides legislation, the government should initiate awareness-raising and education campaigns to change public perception of human rights.
AWAM Executive Secretary Naseem Anthony called immediate repeal of laws protecting discriminatory practices.
AWAM coordinator Shazia George also spoke on the occasion.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 29th, 2012.