NPRC Women Safe Spaces: Delivering Justice for Women?

Introduction

Can the NPRC processes help deliver justice for women who are victims of past human rights violations, from the liberation struggle traumas to decades of economic discrimination? What about women perpetrators?

The National Peace and Reconciliation Commission (NPRC) recently created safe spaces for women to engage with the Commission’s transitional justice interventions. It is the Commission’s reflective conscience that in times of conflict women and girls experience unique violations and are sensitive victims that require safer spaces to tell their stories. Women generally suffer from physical and emotional violence because of their gender and societal positions. They are physically and emotionally tortured by being sexually abused, used as political baits, through enforced disappearance of their husbands, sons and daughters as well as though deliberate discrimination from socioeconomic levers.

Heal Zimbabwe commends the NPRC’s initiative as it resonates with the organisation’s interventions that values women specific platforms through Women Safe Spaces for Reconciliation (WSSR). Heal Zimbabwe’s experiences with WSSR is that creating safer spaces for women to narrate their experiences of human rights violations ensures that their voices are heard and that justice is served. The spaces protect them from public humiliation, retraumatisation and socio-cultural discrimination associated with exposure of personal conflict experiences. Therefore, this article provides more insights on the importance of Women Safe Spaces in healing and reconciliation processes while reflecting on Heal Zimbabwe’s experiences in working with women only safe spaces in politically volatile communities.

Source: Heal Zimbabwe Trust

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