The Federation of Medical Women of Canada (FMWC) is dedicated to promoting the health of women and girls. Violence against women and girls in all its forms (physical, psychological, social, cultural, and sexual) is a violation of women’s fundamental human rights. Violence that is occurring in war and conflict zones around the world is leaving women and children extremely vulnerable to gender-based violence, lack of access to sexual and reproductive health facilities, loss of education, and forced displacement. Conflict disproportionally affects women and girls as existing inequalities are often further magnified. Increasingly, health care workers are targeted in war and conflict situations, especially women. FMWC also condemns all acts of violence and inappropriate behaviors targeted at health care workers in war and conflict zones.

FMWC urges governments and non-governmental organizations to allocate resources for research into the causes of violence as well as for prevention and treatment programs. Research includes supporting health care workers and community health practitioners, including midwives and doulas, to support their expertise in supporting women and girls during war and conflict situations. FMWC urges governments to send aide, in support of the needs of women and girls experiencing the impacts of conflict and war (such as menstrual hygiene products and supplies required for delivery). As the needs of women and girls are unique and disproportionately affected in times of conflict, we support a needs assessment be conducted to ensure that the aid provided does indeed meet the needs of those affected. FMWC urges the effective training and education of victims, health care workers, law enforcement personnel, and members of the criminal justice system on the various aspects of violence against women and girls in the hopes of reducing future impacts to women and girls’ health and support those who have already been victimized.