White House Releases Plan to End Gender-Based Violence

“The United States will be a place where all people live free from gender-based violence (GBV) in all aspects of their lives.”

–Vision Statement from the 2023 U.S. National Plan to End Gender-Based Violence

On May 25, 2023, the White House released the inaugural U.S. National Plan to End Gender-Based Violence: Strategies for Action. Gender-based violence is a term used to collectively describe sexual violence, intimate partner violence, stalking, and other forms of gender-based violence. It can be experienced by people from all walks of life at any age. The risk of GBV is increased and its effects are exacerbated in times of disaster or crisis. Data collection and reports related to the COVID-19 pandemic indicated an increase in GBV, particularly intimate partner violence where victims were forced to quarantine with abusive partners and faced increasing isolation. Also revealed were the difficulties that victims experienced trying to access shelter, assistance, and legal and advocacy services amid a public health crisis.

The Plan builds on existing federal initiatives and work by the White House Gender Policy Council such as the 2021 National Strategy on Gender Equity and Equality and the 2022 U.S. Strategy to Prevent and Respond to Gender-Based Violence Globally. It asserts that ending GBV is “[…] quite simply, a matter of human rights and justice.”

To advance its comprehensive, whole-of-government approach to preventing and addressing gender-based violence, the Plan establishes seven strategic pillars as follows:

  • Pillar 1: Prevention
  • Pillar 2: Support, Healing, Safety, and Well-Being
  • Pillar 3: Economic Security and Housing Stability
  • Pillar 4: Online Safety
  • Pillar 5: Legal and Justice Systems
  • Pillar 6: Emergency Preparedness and Crisis Response
  • Pillar 7: Research and Data

Each pillar outlines goals and objectives which will guide action, new research, policy, and interagency collaboration to end gender-based violence in the United States and, ideally, around the world.

For further information, check out these HSDL resources on Gender and Violence, Intimate Partner Violence, and Sexual Violence.

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