The United States is committed to preventing and responding to all forms of gender-based violence globally, including conflict-related sexual violence. The forthcoming update to the U.S. Strategy to Prevent and Respond to Gender-Based Violence Globally recommits us to these efforts. After taking part in the United Kingdom’s inaugural Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict in 2014, the United States will reinvigorate its global commitments through its participation in the Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict Initiative (PSVI) International Conference, November 28-29, 2022, during the annual 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence. This conference will showcase progress made over the last 10 years since the launch of PSVI and secure commitments to action from the international community. Jennifer Klein, Assistant to the President and Director of the White House Gender Policy Council, will deliver high-level remarks on behalf of the United States and highlight U.S. commitments to prevent and respond to conflict-related sexual violence, which include:
- Issuing a Presidential Memorandum on Promoting Accountability for Conflict-Related Sexual Violence, which will commit the U.S. government to fully exercising existing authorities to promote justice and accountability for acts of conflict-related sexual violence; devoting the necessary resources for reporting on conflict-related sexual violence incidents and training on gender-based violence issues; and broadening engagement with partners to encourage establishment and use of their own tools to promote justice and accountability.
- Prioritizing gender-based violence prevention and response, including through the expansion of the United States’ flagship Safe from the Start initiative that ensures gender-based violence prevention and response is prioritized, integrated, and coordinated across humanitarian responses from the outset of crises, and continued investment in the Voices Against Violence Initiative, which provides access to services, protection, and justice to survivors of extreme forms of gender-based violence.
- Committing an additional $400,000 to the United State’s annual contribution of $1.75 million to the Office of the UN Special Representative to the Secretary General (SRSG) on Sexual Violence in Conflict, supporting the SRSG’s work to promote justice and accountability, foster national ownership and leadership for a sustainable, survivor-centered response, and address the root causes of conflict-related sexual violence.
- Supporting civil society efforts, through a $10 million investment, to investigate and document conflict-related sexual violence in line with the Murad Code in the pursuit of truth and justice for victims and survivors, and accountability for crimes involving violations and abuses of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law, and committing an additional $2 million for survivor-centered, trauma-informed approaches to fostering survivor resilience during and after conflict.
- Incorporating a gender perspective across U.S. foreign policy, including through implementation of the U.S. National Strategy on Gender Equity and Equality; U.S. Strategy on Women, Peace, and Security; U.S. Strategy to Prevent Conflict and Promote Stability; U.S. Strategy to Prevent and Respond to Gender-Based Violence Globally; and U.S. Strategy to Anticipate, Prevent and Respond to Atrocities. The forthcoming update to the S. Strategy to Prevent and Respond to Gender-Based Violence Globally incorporates gender-based violence risks, prevention, and response as part of U.S. national security and human rights efforts to promote peace, security, and democracy around the world. The Department will release this Global GBV Strategy in December.