Mexico’s annual Day of the Dead celebrations took a sharply political turn this year, as hundreds of protesters used the day to draw attention to the grave injustice of some of those deaths: female victims. Wearing black clothing and skeletal face paint, dozens of women marched in downtown Mexico City chanting “not one more” to commemorate the growing number of women murdered and pressure the government to put an end to what they say is the rampant impunity fuelling it (Reuters). Protests in Mexico have grown in recent weeks following the death of Mara Fernanda Castilla, a 19-year-old girl who used a ride-hailing app to get a ride home in September and was found dead a week later. Thousands of women protested Castilla’s death and demanded action from the government.
According to Reuters, there were 2,735 femicides in Mexico last year, and femicides have risen nearly 25% during the presidency of Enrique Pena Nieto compared with the previous administration and Mexico’s total murder tally is on track to hit the highest level in its modern history this year.
“This problem is difficult to eradicate because it is rooted in ideas that assume that we as women are worth less than men, that we as women can be treated like trash,” deputy state prosecutor for gender violence crimes Dilcya Garcia Espinoza de los Monteros said at the time.
The problem of femicide isn’t limited to Mexico; Honduras and Argentina have also seen a recent spike in the murder of women and, consequently, a growing public outcry demanding government action. And as the protests grow, so do women’s calls for action: “not one more.”
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Free Yourself Global
Our global domestic violence campaign Free Yourself Global explores the enculturation of violence through families over generations, and how does one, whether the abuser or the abused, interrupt the pattern of violence? This for-profit campaign will contribute over half the proceeds directly to our affiliate organizations combating this pandemic and supporting victims and recovering abusers. We also aim to connect these groups to share resources, tools, ideas, and collaborate. Currently organizations from over 68 countries around the world have officiated their support of Free Yourself.
More importantly, this initiative hopes to bring together all of the voices of the participants of domestic violence, including recovering abusers, victims, children, educators, support agencies and health professionals, law enforcement agencies, politicians, celebrities and social entrepreneurs who work to aid in this cause. It is in this aim that “Free Yourself” inspires us. When all stakeholders come together in a grass roots forum, we strengthen our ability to understand, address, and end the cycle of domestic abuse.
Do you have an experience with domestic violence, either as a victim, a perpetrator (or both) or as a professional? We want to hear your story! You can submit it anonymously via our website FreeYourselfGlobal.com or via Facebook message through our @FreeYourselfGlobal Facebook Page.