LEAF, in partnership with Rights and Democracy, the Women’s Human Rights in Conflict Situations, and the Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC) have launched a groundbreaking international campaign to end the stigma, prejudice, disadvantage and exclusion experienced by women who have suffered sexual violence. The campaign is aimed at ensuring women and girl survivors of violence are provided with adequate reparation and remedy needed to rebuild their lives and communities.

The Nairobi Declaration is the instrument that has been drafted to achieve the goal of gender based equality for survivors of sexual violence. It is an innovative mechanism designed to both recognize the unique harm experienced by women in conflict situations, and to achieve the reparation needed to address the violation of women’s and children’s human rights. This groundbreaking campaign endeavours to correct the systemic flaws of national truth and reconciliation initiatives and existing reparation schemes and to inform those being developed by the International Criminal Court. The Declaration document is of domestic relevance in Canada for its potential application to the Indian Residential School Truth and Reconciliation process.

The campaign and its Nairobi Declaration were introduced on May 17 at a press conference co-organized by the Coalition and LEAF. The event heard from Canadian women’s rights advocates, including Fiona Sampson representing LEAF and Mary Eberts representing NWAC, and Coalition members from Sierra Leone and Peru. A copy of the final draft of the Nairobi Declaration will be available on the LEAF website.