COUNCIL OF EUROPE CONVENTION ON PREVENTING AND COMBATTING VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN AND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, BETTER KNOWN AS
The Istanbul Convention
On 18 November 2015, the Netherlands ratified the Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combatting violence against women and domestic violence, or in short, the ‘Istanbul Convention’. The Convention came into force in the Netherlands on 1 March 2016.
The Convention has not (yet) been ratified for the Caribbean Netherlands and the Caribbean constituent countries of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.
The Convention sets standards for combatting violence against women and domestic violence. The Kingdom of the Netherlands has assigned important responsibilities for combatting domestic violence at local, regional and national level.
Does the approach to tackling violence against women and domestic violence in the Caribbean part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands comply with the Convention?
Yes, in general terms. For example, the Caribbean Netherlands and the Caribbean constituent countries have set up telephone helplines for professionals and citizens (article 24). The islands have each set up their own helplines in a different way or are in the process of doing so. There are also adequate shelters for victims of domestic violence on each of the islands (article 23).
However, some aspects of the Convention require greater attention, including prevention (article 12) and implementing gender-sensitive policies (article 6).
How can the islands use the Istanbul Convention?
The Convention is an important stimulus and can help the islands improve their approach to tackling domestic violence. The Convention includes a specific and detailed description of an effective approach. This makes it a very useful tool, as the islands can assess their own policies based on the Convention.
You can read the Convention on this page.