VOTES WITHOUT VIOLENCE: Monitoring and Mitigating Violence Against Women in Elections
Election monitoring, whether by citizen observation groups or international observers, can provide a significant opportunity to assess the quality of women’s participation throughout an election cycle, and identify barriers to their full and effective participation, including violence against women in elections (VAW-E). Citizen observer groups in particular may have extensive reach across their respective countries. Many maintain an established nonpartisan profile and are trusted by the public as independent and neutral stakeholders. With gender-sensitive assessment tools and training on how to identify and record VAW-E, citizen election monitors can not only raise awareness of the issue, but have the potential to produce better data on the phenomenon, which has historically been underreported and hidden.
This toolkit serves as a companion to existing guidance on monitoring electoral violence through gender-aware citizen observation. It is designed to help nonpartisan citizen election observer groups assess and mitigate the impact of violence against women throughout an election cycle. Specifically, the toolkit outlines the key information these observer groups will need to carry out a long-term observation (LTO) that combines violence monitoring with a prevention and mitigation component—a best practice to stop and address VAW-E. Click here to access the toolkit.