Joining Hands Against Domestic Violence in Ethiopia

The Ethiopian penal code was revised in 2005 to outlaw domestic violence. However, many professionals working in the justice systems remained unaware that domestic violence was a crime.

To build awareness and effectively prosecute offenders, JES partnered with the Ethiopian Women Lawyers Association to develop a training program that would equip police officers, public prosecutors, judges, court administrators, and civil society organizations with knowledge of the law and best practices in dealing with domestic violence.

JES conducted training with over 250 Ethiopian justice professionals in November 2007, covering the social context of domestic violence, the challenges women face in leaving abusive relationships, international and national laws and policies, risk assessment, safety planning and interviewing skills. Technical and subject matter expertise were provided by the Victim Services and Crime Prevention Divisions, Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General, British Columbia.

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November 2006 - November 2007

To ensure that our trainings met their stated goals, JES evaluated our impact through participant questionnaires and qualitative feedback at the end of each session. Participants and partners expressed a high level of satisfaction with the training content and facilitation style, and reported an expansion of their knowledge and skills on the use of domestic violence resources to better respond to the new law.

  • Organized 2 train-the-trainers (TOT) and 3 regional workshops for more than 250 Ethiopian judges, police and prosecutors
  • Built formalized partnership between Judiciary, Prosecutors, Police, Ministry of Justice, and NGOs with common purpose of improving conviction rates in domestic violence cases in Ethiopia
  • The project led to the creation of a video documentary called Its Time: African Women Join Hands Against Domestic Violence, which describes the collaborative efforts of JES, the Ethiopian Women Lawyers Association and the National Prosecuting Authority of South Africa in their fight against domestic violence in Ethiopia and South Africa. JES organized a Canadian national tour in May 2008 with representatives from both South Africa and Ethiopia to showcase the documentary
joining hands against domestic violence in Ethiopia