Post submitted by Maureen McCarty, former HRC Deputy Director of Marketing

Today HRC commemorates International Women’s Day as a time to celebrate the economic, political and social achievements of women.

The international holiday began in 1911 as a way to honor the Suffragette movement. For over 100 years countries have paid homage to women with thousands of events across the globe. 

"As we commemorate International Women’s Day, we must look back on a year of shocking crimes of violence against women and girls and ask ourselves how to usher in a better future," said the United Nations Secretary-General in a statement released yesterday.

According to the UN, up to seven in ten women globally will be beaten, raped, abused or mutilated in their lifetime.

As of 2010, the rate of sexual violence against women fell 64 percent over the previous decade, according to a Bureau of Justice Statistics survey released yesterday.

Just yesterday, President Obama signed the re-authorized Violence Against Women Act into law, which not only strengthens the criminal justice system’s response to crimes against women, but also explicitly expands protections for LGBT victims.

In the U.S., the month of March is Women’s History Month. Stay tuned to HRC Blog throughout the month as we profile a few of the numerous female leaders of the LGBT movement.

Filed under: Hate Crimes

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