This project has its origins in the work of the Saartjie Baartman Legal Advice and Training Project, a partnership undertaking between the Saartjie Baartman Centre and the Gender Project of the Community Law Centre. Assisting clients in obtaining and enforcing protection orders in terms of the Domestic Violence Act (1998) (DVA) is a major part of the Legal Advice and Training Project’s work at the Saartjie Baartman Centre. In the course of this work, the Project has noticed that many of the well-documented shortcomings in the police response to domestic violence still persist. These range from infringements of complainants’ right to dignity (for example, making insensitive comments and ‘blaming’ them for the violence), to conduct that endangers their lives and right to freedom from violence, such as a refusal to intervene in potentially life-threatening situations of domestic violence. Such failures to act or intervene appropriately, in addition to potentially endangering the complainant, also constitute a breach of the duties imposed on the police by the DVA and the accompanying National Instruction issued by the Commissioner of Police in terms of the DVA.
At the Crossroads - Linking Strategic Frameworks to Address Gender-Based Violence & HIV AIDS in Southern Africa.pdf
It is now generally accepted that the intersections between gender-based violence and HIV/AIDS are among the most significant of the gendered dimensions of this pandemic. It is noteworthy that the UN Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women devoted her 2005 thematic report to these intersections. She observed that while some progress is being made separately on ending violence against women and on stemming the spread of HIV/AIDS, national and international efforts would be vastly more effective if they addressed the interconnectness between the two pandemics.
The Domestic Violence Act 116 of 1998 came into operation on 15 December 1999. This new Act was generally welcomed for trying to fill in gaps in the preceding legislation. Unfortunately, the Act is quite complicated and not always easy to understand.
The Gender Project has produced an information pamphlet which sets out the different ways in which the law can deal with sex work.
The Gender Project produced a research paper analysing the equality clause in the Constitution looking specifically at the prohibition against unfair discrimination on the basis of sex or gender.