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Core elements of legislation on the maltreatment of widows

The following elements should be established as the core elements of any law on the maltreatment of widows:

  • Prohibition against discrimination against women in all areas of life;
  • Explicit extension of prohibition against discrimination to matters involving adoption, marriage, divorce, dissolution, marital property, inheritance and other personal matters;
  • Equal property and inheritance rights for women and for girls;
  • Equal rights and responsibilities in marriage and with regard to the family;
  • Equal rights in land tenure and property reform;
  • Victim protection and support;
  • Public awareness and education about the maltreatment of widows, women’s human rights, laws, and remedies;
  • Trainings for legal actors, religious, traditional and community leaders and NGOs on women’s human rights, laws and the dynamics of the widow maltreatment;
  • Accountability for perpetrators who violate women’s human rights;
  • Registration of all marriages;
  • Harmonization of the legal framework that addresses women’s human rights and equality in family law, inheritance laws, land and property systems, regulations, customary laws, and criminal and civil codes.