New ‘Alert for Gender Violence’ stalled for changes in government administration

By December 5, 2018

The state of Jalisco has become the latest region of Mexico to be placed under another Alert for Gender Violence, (AVGM) following a ruling at the end of November.

Although the state had already raised an alert against gender violence in 2016, increasing violence has led state authorities to seek federal government support under an upgraded protection mechanism.

The second ruling is hoped to lead to more support of the state’s forensic department and legal services in a bid to reduce impunity, allow for better identification of the signs of femicide and support women in violent situations.

Jalisco joins 14 other areas of the country that have launched alerts against gender violence as a result of increased femicides and attacks as a direct result of a woman’s gender, which can be found in:  Colima, Chiapas, State of Mexico, Guerrero, Morelos, Michoacán, Nuevo Leon, San Luis Potosi, Sinaloa, Quintana Roo, Nayarit, Zacatecas, Oaxaca and Veracruz.

The brutal and usually public elements of these murders add to the femicide element and reveal a society that is still relentlessly battling gender aggression.

The term Femicide has been frequented a lot more in Mexico recently and specifically looks at killings of women as a direct result of their gender. However, Animal Politico has suggested the most recent Jalisco alert was under-reported because it coincided with AMLO’s inauguration.

Although femicide is noted as being on the rise in a number of states, contrary to this official reports from across the country suggest the amount of victims is still relatively low.

According to Publimetro, the reason that femicide results are low – especially in recent years that witnessed thousands of murders across Mexico – was actually because these cases were only brought to light as a result of media pressure and citizen organisations. This is combined with large elements of impunity which mean a number more cases go unreported and unsolved.

As a result of impunity, it appears that the general trend of gender violence is on the rise. In another state, Guanajuato, 200 women were killed between January and August of this year – which was the same number the state had experienced in the whole of 2017.

As well as concerns about impunity levels across the country, according to the Jalisco decree signed November 30, however, changes in administration mean that the authorities are yet to decide how to move forward with further protections.

Reports of the former government’s failings against protecting human rights and reducing violence against civilians had also stretched to gender-based violence. Activists recently spoke out against the government with various marches across the capital city to raise awareness of the ongoing attacks to women.  The government has since then changed power and AMLO has promised to address violence and reduce it in his country.