Isolation should not neglect the increasing number of cases of violence against women in Mexico, especially in this quarantine. Let's compare the cases of the covid-19 with the cases of gender violence: the first positive case of the coronavirus officially recognized by the authorities in Mexico was on February 27, 2020, by the middle of this week there are 17,799 accumulated confirmed diagnoses, that is to say On average there are 282 cases a day. During the first quarter of 2020 there are a total of 26,695 cases of violence against women, which includes femicides, child trafficking, trafficking, willful injuries, rapes: on average there are 293 cases per day. In Mexico there are more daily cases of violence against women than coronavirus cases. Since the healthy distance was established on March 26, the Mexican State has taken a series of measures around the pandemic, such as the cancellation of classes, the call to avoid crowds in public spaces, such as parks, gyms and religious temples, and every night, unlike the lack of official communication in other countries, there is a press conference to inform the Mexican population about everything related to the health crisis, however, what are the measures of the State to prevent and stop the growing violence against women?
As Almudena Barragán and Darinka Rodríguez published in this newspaper, during the quarantine calls for gender violence increased 60% and asylum requests increased 30%, according to the National Network of Refugees. Due to the implications of economic instability, the intensity with which stereotypes are sharpened in housework and, in a large number of cases, the consumption of alcohol by aggressors, the already normalized violence grows. It should not be forgotten that around March 8 and 9, when cases of covid-19 were growing in Spain, Italy and the United States, measures began to be taken in Mexico around the pandemic and demands for rights of women - the feminicidal emergency and the legalization of abortion in all states - were neglected by the current government. Not only that, we must not forget that Andrés Manuel López Obrador very symbolically diverted attention by scheduling the sale of raffle tickets for the presidential plane on those dates. The message remains the same: the State does not care about the right to life of women who are even more at risk in quarantine. And this other message that the Mexican president made evident when entering the second phase of the pandemic: “I call for us to take care of older adults in our families, but now we must apply ourselves more, it is known that, above all, daughters take care of to the fathers, men can be more detached ”. In other words, the caregiving role belongs to women, but it does not provide protection of any kind at a time when violence is just growing in the homes.
It is not new that the house is a risky space for women, but it is very significant that neither before nor after the pandemic has this been reduced, but quite the opposite. Why? According to the report "Keys to understand and prevent the murders of women in Mexico", published by Data Cívica in 2019, if something has not changed from 2000 to 2017 it has been that violence against women in domestic spaces has has been a constant and, given the increase in femicides in the last decade, the report points out that the majority of murders occur at home: “This is mainly due to the fact that, in proportion, housing is not a risky space for men as it is for women. ” Femicides in domestic spaces are particularly violent, they are carried out by suffocation, poisoning, they are carried out with sharp weapons, they use physical force and, in most cases, they occur with firearms. In fact, based on an investigation by Estefanía Vela, 6 out of 10 women are killed with firearms, which opens another discussion about the possession of weapons in Mexico, since there are around 16.8 million weapons in the hands of civilians and, at this intersection with the quarantine, the rates of violence against women has grown.
The coronavirus crisis makes visible what happens in Mexico regarding violence against women: during this quarantine, according to the Executive Secretariat of the National System of Public Security (SESNSP), which month after month publishes reports based on In the investigation folders of the Public Ministry of the 32 states, this first quarter has been one of the most violent for women. From January to March of this year, there were 964 women murdered. The only crime that decreased in quarantine, predictably, was kidnapping. The SESNSP is one of the two sources to consult on violence against women, the other is the Inegi, however, the data they publish is incomplete to understand the dimension of the problem, and this is substantial to devise prevention and prevention, such as these gaps pointed out by Mónica Meltis, director of Data Cívica: “In Mexico we do not know much about how indigenous, Afro-descendant, disabled women die and also little about migrant women. […] This lack of information generates, on the one hand, that we are not able to know to what extent these characteristics disproportionately affect certain women. Furthermore, it causes a double violation, since having no data on how homicidal violence affects it is not possible to generate policies that are intended to address these vulnerabilities through effective public policies. ” And to prevent and stop the triple vulnerability of quarantine, it is important to have the most complete information possible in order to face the problem.
As Rita Segato recently said: "the plagues are always biblical, pedagogical, sobering." I hope that in Mexico it was sobering that the crisis in the face of the pandemic urgently extends it to the crisis of women's security. The covid-19 changed our reality and this issue of insecurity specifically addressed to the right of life of women must be tackled, also protecting physical and psychological integrity. Silvia Federici, another writer I love, recently wrote about quarantine: “There are networks of women who are already forming to strengthen ties. Strengthen not only our capacity to resist the State, but to impose another type of society. As it is said in Spain and in Latin America: a society where life is at the center ”. This, life at the center, not only in the face of the threat of covid-19, but in Mexico also in the face of the threat posed by the growing violence against women in quarantine.
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