Sonke Newsletter – December 2017
A newly released 16-minute video celebrates the achievements of Sonke since its founding in 2006. The video also tells the story of the nearly 250 people who have worked at the organisation as well as the people whose lives have been impacted by Sonke’s work. We’re really proud of it and would love you to watch it!
MEN & HIV
According to 2017 estimates from UNAIDS, just 26% of men in southern and eastern Africa have received an HIV test in the past 12 months and know their results, compared to 34% for women. This poses a huge problem to the HIV response, write Jonathan Hopkins and Sonke’s Gadeeja Abbas in this article published on World AIDS Day in the Daily Maverick.
Despite former Deputy Minister of Higher Education and Training Mduduzi Manana being found guilty of three counts of assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm, he remains a Member of Parliament. In this important article, Sonke’s Nabeelah Mia challenges government to look beyond 16 Days of Activism to ensure we move towards a non-violent South Africa, where we can trust Parliament to hold our leaders accountable.
Inmates, like the rest of us, have the rights to be treated with dignity, to be safe, to be housed in sanitary conditions, and to receive food and exercise. However, most likely due to the high rates of violent crime that we experience in South Africa, including rape, there is a pervasive lack of sympathy for the people we put behind bars. This Daily Maverick article by Sonke’s Ariane Nevin and Clare Ballard from Lawyer for Human Rights, is a must-read.
A recent High Court ruling declaring the defence of reasonable chastisement unconstitutional in South Africa – effectively making corporal punishment illegal in all spaces, has divided parents across the country. Leading many to ask, ‘What should I do to discipline my child if a can’t give them a hiding?’ In this article published on News24, Sonke’s Wessel van den Berg makes an important distinction between punishment and positive discipline.
“I am the second born in a family of five. I grew up in Nakuru, in a religious household where my father was a pastor and my mother sang in the choir. I didn’t talk about sex or sexuality unless it was within a biblical context.” Sonke’s Josephine Mukwendi interviewed Festus, an alumni of the MenEngage Africa Training Initiative. Read the full interview with Festus here.
Journalists and editors have a huge role to play in challenging the narrative of rape in South Africa. Reporting on Gender-Based Violence: A Guide for Journalists and Editors produced by Sonke and Health-e News, aims to assist journalists in reframing the portrayal of gender-based violence in South Africa. Download it here.
What we’re reading
“Spoor said that the Settlement Fund would have enough money to operate over ten to 15 years, and would be responsible for tracking, screening and compensating claimants, both in SA and the rest of southern Africa.”
“Some political commentators have begun to question why it is the black officials – rather than the (often) white people who corrupt them – who are under more scrutiny in the press.”
NEW YORK TIMES
“Research has continually shown that companies with more women in management have less sexual harassment. It’s partly because harassment flourishes when men are in power and women aren’t, and men feel pressure to accept other men’s sexualized behavior.”