SAfm: Financially dependent women are at higher risk of Gender-Based Violence

SAfm: Financially dependent women are at higher risk of Gender-Based Violence

SAfm: Financially dependent women are at higher risk of Gender-Based Violence

Late night conversations with Patricia Ntuli, Studies in Poverty and Inequality Institute’s Tina van Straten spoke about Poverty and the correlation to Gender based violence.


Not only are financially vulnerable women more susceptible to gender-based violence and rape, but men who are financially vulnerable become perpetrators because of their circumstances. The four main causes for Gender-based Violence are harmful masculinities, normalisation/ over exposure to violence, poverty and lack of accountability/ institutional failure.


An estimated 56% of men have admitted to raping and beating women in the past twelve months according to a recent survey, research done by Studies in Poverty and Inequality Institute. These numbers increased from the initial national lockdown. With job-loss and the stress of financial burdens weighing down on men, they became perpetrators of gender-based violence.


It is not that those financially strained men were naturally more abusive, those men may have many psychological reasons for doing what they do, including examples such as trauma from apartheid, patriarchal expectations placed on them, to be a bread winner and the feeling of being emasculated.


"When men cannot fulfil the role placed on them as the head of the home, they assert their dominance in other ways, most ways inclusive of gender-based violence and rape," - Tina adds.


This is where a Basic Income Grant can give the women experiencing this nightmare the opportunity to escape from gender-based violence, the research done by DSL (Decent Standard of Living) explains how women can benefit from a life of dignity as well.


A basic income grant will also help the economy, it will allow the recipients to participate in the economy and be treated with dignity. A Basic Income Grant is universal.

“When people are treated with dignity they behave with dignity,” – Tina highlights


We can take steps on our own as a nation, calling out rape jokes and asserting a line not to be crossed. Do not remain silent in these instances, stand up for the people who are falling victim. Often the blame is put on the victim, the raped instead of rapist, we need to have educational discussions with the men in our lives, and force out their toxic ideas of masculinity.


The only remaining way that the men who gender-based violence assert their dominance, is to conquer women, especially when they are dealing with the frustration of not being able to provide for their families. It makes them feel like a man. We need to come to terms that there is no silver bullet solution. This is an issue that impacts everyone, we all need to participate in the healing process.


Source: SAfm


For information on funding a Basic Income Grant, read here