Thailand: Fighting Domestic Violence
Monday, September 29, 2008 1:08 PM

Although Thailand has been a signatory to the Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) since 1985, there continues to be a high rate of domestic violence.  A recent article published by the Integrated Regional Information Networks (IRIN), notes that in 2007 the Government’s One Stop Crisis Center (OSCC) reported approximately 19,000 cases of domestic abuse toward women and children.  This number is a significant increase from 2005, and Pornpet Panjapiyakul of Thailand's Bureau of Health System Development Department is unsure how to explain it.  He states that it “could be because we are more efficient in reaching the victims as more OSCC bases have been established or it could be from the intense economic, political and social context of Thailand”.

The article reports that officials in Thailand do agree that there are probably many more cases of domestic violence than have been reported.  Societal norms define domestic abuse as a private matter to be resolved at home, not in courts.  A new law that was introduced prohibits marital rape, but many law enforcement officials have not taken this into account.  According to the article, the Ministry of Health has plans to establish more One Stop Crisis Centers in the country.  However, the article reports that deeply ingrained societal norms regarding women must be confronted, and changed.

To read the full article, click here.

Compiled from: Thailand: Fighting Domestic Violence”, Integrated Regional Information Networks, 22 September 2008.