Honour related violence (HRV) is a collection of practices which are used to control behaviour and exert power within families to protect perceived cultural and religious beliefs and/or honour. Such violence can occur when perpetrators consider that an individual, usually a woman, has shamed the family and/or community by breaking their honour code. The individual is being punished for actually or allegedly undermining what the family or community believes to be the correct code of behaviour.
Honour based violence is a fundamental abuse of Human Rights. There is no honour in the carrying out or commissioning of murder, kidnap and the many other acts, behaviour and conduct which make up violence in the name of honour.
Honour related violence can take place across national and international boundaries, within extended families and communities and often cuts across cultures, communities and faith groups; including Turkish, Kurdish, Afghani, South Asian, African, Middle Eastern and European. This is not an exhaustive list. The term is used to describe violence, which sometimes results in a murder, in the name of so-called honour. This is when – predominantly – women are injured or killed for perceived immoral behaviour, which is deemed to have breached the honour code of a family or community, causing shame.
White Ribbon UK works with HASP (Honour Ambassadors against Shame Practices), and Soroptimist International to campaign against honour related violence, including FGM (Female Genital Mutilation) and Forced Marriage. Our campaign is about tackling male violence against women, and despite the fact that the majority of these practices are instigated by women, they are carried out in the interests of men, and male-oriented societies. Therefore it is most definitely within our remit to campaign against it.
In the coming year we will be implementing additional training for our ambassadors, including in-depth education on the subject of honour related violence, and how to combat it here in the UK.