However, violence against women continues as well as flawed investigations, enabling to perpetrators and victims alike that women’s lives do not matter. Finally, Alejandra Colom moderated an exchange around the importance of readdressing gender inequalities in the legal sector among legal academics, legal practitioners, in-house counsels, law firms, and relevant civil society organisations. Guatemala is ranked the 25th most violent country in the world and Guatemalan police have a reputation for being non-responsive to the high crime rates. The lack of security within the government is what encouraged the start of mobs turning to vigilante justice. Unfortunately, much of the crime associated with these mobs is just as bad as the crime they claim they are attempting to prevent. Most of the locals keep quiet for fear of being targeted by these groups themselves, and many of the people participating in the violence are forced to do so.
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These limitations affect the way women address health care, maternal mortality, infant morbidity and mortality, malnutrition; as well as contact with family and their financial independence. These are primarily greenhouses that Mujerave builds close to the homes of the women Mujerave collaborates with. This strategy makes our greenhouses culturally appropriate spaces for women to spend time in, and they promote gender equity by increasing the share of land and income women control within the family. Combined with workshops involving men and women from participating families that explore sexism and interfamilial violence in indigenous communities, and Mujerave is transforming neighbourhoods! To read about how gender informs Mujerave’s work, refer to Mujerave’s Needs Assessment. It is important to make distinctions about who migrates from Guatemala due to economic concerns—not all Guatemalans live in poverty or extreme poverty. One difference in migratory patterns exits between ladino Guatemalans, those whose blood lines can be traced back to Spain, and indigenous Maya, like Marvin and his family.
Law enforcement often fails to investigate in a timely manner, and blames the victims of the case. Many women abandon their cases because the stress and hardship put onto them. Without proper trials, investigations, and sentencing, the violence towards women will progressively increase. Murders rarely result in any conviction and often are not properly investigated; less than 4 percent of all homicide cases result in conviction for the perpetrators. Perpetrators are confident they will get away with murder, in part because of the “machismo” culture in Latin America. This culture allows women to be treated as objects rather than humans; equality and basic rights granted to men are not even in question for women.
Violence against women in the region is so prevalent that 18 countries have passed laws to protect them, creating a class of homicide known as femicide, which adds tougher penalties and greater law enforcement attention to the issue. Two extraordinary legal decisions by the Trump administration have struck at the core of asylum claims rooted in domestic violence or threats against families like Lubia’s — not only casting doubt on their case, but almost certainly on thousands of others as well, immigration lawyers say. The lawyer will bring Patricia Sellers, the woman who succeeded in having rape defined as a weapon of war at the trials for genocide in the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda, to be an expert witness.
Her main task as a criminologist was to take photographs of victims of violence and the scenes where it had taken place. She always said that her work gave a voice to people who had had their lives stolen from them. At least 160 women have been killed in the first four months of 2021 in Guatemala — more than one per day.
The groundbreaking case resulted in the conviction of two former military officers of crimes against humanity and granted 18 reparation measures to the women survivors and their community. The abuelas of Sepur Zarco, as the women are respectfully referred to, are now waiting to experience justice.
The femicide law required every region in the nation to install a specialized court focused on violence against women. To win asylum in the United States, applicants must show specific grounds for their persecution back home, like their race, religion, political affiliation or membership in a particular social group. Lawyers have sometimes pushed successfully for women to qualify as a social group because of the overwhelming violence they face, citing a 2014 case in which a Guatemalan woman fleeing domestic violence was found to be eligible to apply for asylum in the United States. But violence against women, and domestic violence in particular, is a powerful and often overlooked factor in the migration crisis.
In August 2014, the wave of women and children fleeing Central America was still making headlines. One of three articles examining the conditions that led to a mass of women and children fleeing Guatemala for the United States. By then, she hopes to be in the United States, free of the poverty, violence and suffocating confines for women in Guatemala. Soon, they reached the side of a highway, where a container truck sat idling. Inside, men, women and children were packed tight, with hardly enough space to move.