New York, November 26, 2013—As part of a campaign to raise awareness about and demand justice for violence against women and girls, a star-studded panel of experts and advocates gathered at Columbia Law School for a Nov. 7 discussion of law, policy, and the obstacles women face in the United States.
Co-sponsored by the Center for Intersectionality and Social Policy Studies
(CISPS), in conjunction with V-Day’s One Billion Rising campaign, the event was one of many leading up to a Valentine’s Day demand for justice for survivors of gender violence. Last year, One Billion Rising
brought together one billion people in 207 countries under the mission of dancing to demand an end to violence against women and girls. V-Day is a global anti-violence movement.
’s Laura Flanders facilitated a panel discussion that included Columbia Law School Professor Kimberlé Crenshaw
, executive director of CISPS; Catherine Albisa ’89, the head of the National Economic & Social Rights Initiative; Eve Ensler, founder of V-Day; Monique Harden, co-founder of Advocates for Environmental Human Rights; Donna Hylton of STEPS to End Family Violence; Sara Jayaraman, co-founder of Restaurant Opportunities Centers United; and Sylvia McAdam, co-founder of Canada’s Idle No More.
“We’re here tonight to press our conversation at the place where justice is so often is denied…the law,” said Crenshaw, who gave introductory remarks. “It’s ground zero for what we’re really trying to think about, trying to rethink justice.”
Advocates should look beyond the most affected communities to connect to others, the panelists said. Albisa challenged people to participate in principled engagement that moves beyond tactics that unite communities temporarily. Instead, different groups should work for justice for all because of a shared humanity and an understanding that rights are universal, she said.