The Daily Abuse
Femicide. Rape. Sexual assault. Violence in schools and homes. And some of it, all caught on camera. These are some of South Africa’s newsroom staples and yet, even with all this attention, domestic violence and sexual abuse are issues that get lost in the minds of South Africans who have grown numb to the stats.
On the 22 March, the day after Human Rights Day, women’s empowerment and feminist organisation, People Opposing Women’s Abuse (POWA), will launch its first news publication – The Daily Abuse. This newsletter is designed as a broadsheet newspaper that will report on 360 incidents of domestic and sexual violence in South Africa – highlighting the prevalence of gender-based violence in the country.
The Daily Abuse aims to tell the real human stories behind the statistics so often quoted. Instead of focussing solely on statistics, academic reports and numbers, each article tells the stories of victims of domestic violence and sexual abuse; how others have conquered this turbulent cycle; the heart-breaking details of those who got out when it was already too late; and the alarming frequency of physical and sexual assaults across all levels in society.
According to POWA an average of 360 incidences of physical and sexual abuse against women take place in South Africa daily. This means that a woman is physically abused every four minutes. Reporting on the 360 incidences which could have taken place on one day, Human Rights Day 2018, The Daily Abuse seeks to bring this shocking number to life for readers through articles which have been built around real statistics and incidents of violence reported in South Africa. Whilst the names and key facts have been altered, the central message is clear: whilst global awareness and activism campaigns such as 16 Days of Activism and International Women’s Day create platforms to drive conversations and action, we cannot afford to forget the abuse is a daily occurrence which has become pervasive in South African society.
Nhlanhla Mokwena, executive director of POWA says that The Daily Abuse is a reminder that South Africans cannot afford to be complacent or fatigued about the issue of domestic violence and sexual abuse.
There are people who’ve opted for apathy, indifference and even victim-shaming when hearing about domestic violence and South Africans need to ask: if we as a nation say we are tired of hearing about it, imagine those who are living with it every day. The Daily Abuse is a publication that will bring attention and remind us all that domestic violence and sexual abuse is indeed a crisis that needs us all to be active citizens in curbing its prevalence.— Nhlanhla Mokwena, executive director of POWA
We can no longer be complacent and then shocked into action with one horrific act of abuse that makes headlines. What about the other 359 victims we are leaving behind daily? This publication will remind us of how pervasive gender-based violence is so that we as a country work towards a time where The Daily Abuse will no longer have incidents to report.”
The Daily Abuse is an initiative that will give the South African public: · 360 reasons to read and understand the many faces of domestic violence and sexual abuse – beyond the numbers in academic papers and crime reports, · 360 proof points on why South Africans should be more outraged on the issues of gender-based violence and sexual abuse, and · 360 reminders that we need to stop turning the page on abuse.
The broadsheet will be distributed across Gauteng, and selected areas in KZN and Mpumalanga
For more information, follow POWA on: