A large, mostly-male crowd turned out for the August 14 dialogue, “Men Standing Against Violence Against Women” at the Durban Playhouse.
Organized by Dramaide.co.za through the Brothers for Life campaign with support from USAID – U.S. Agency for International Development and The U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), the event was part of the 19th South African Women’s Arts Festival.
Speakers included Chief Mangosuthu Buthelezi and actor Patrick Shai, both of whom reinforced the message that men should talk to other men about this issue, in order to take collective action against violence on women.
U.S. Consul General Frances Chisholm also addressed the gathering, noting that, “Gender-based violence is not only a violation of human rights, but also fosters the spread of HIV by limiting a person’s ability to negotiate safe sexual practices, to disclose HIV status, and to access services due to fear of retaliation by a violent partner. “