Throughout this knowledge module, reference to certain provisions or sections of a piece of legislation, part of a legal judgment, or aspect of a practice does not imply that the legislation, judgment, or practice is considered in its entirety to be a good example or a promising practice.

Some of the laws cited herein may contain provisions which authorize the death penalty. In light of the United Nations General Assembly resolutions 62/14963/16865/206, and 67/176 calling for a moratorium on and ultimate abolition of capital punishment, the death penalty should not be included in sentencing provisions for crimes of violence against women and girls.

Other Provisions Related to Domestic Violence LawsResources for Developing Legislation on Domestic Violence
Sexual Harassment in Sport Tools for Drafting Sexual Harassment Laws and Policies
Immigration Provisions Resources for developing legislation on sex trafficking of women and girls
Child Protection Provisions Resources on Forced and Child Marriage
Other provisions related to dowry-related and domestic violence laws
Related Tools

Rights-based Education, Hotlines, and Crisis Centers

Last edited: October 30, 2010

This content is available in


Including provision for educating women about their options and their rights when they have been victims of violence is an important piece of any legislation on violence against women. Education and counseling often are integrated into shelters providing housing for victims, into medical centers providing treatment, or into one-stop service centers. (See Awareness-Raising and Education section)

  • Legislation should require a free, 24 hour hotline that is accessible from anywhere in the country and staffed by persons trained in counseling those who have experienced violence. (See: Crisis Centers and Hotlines, StopVAW, The Advocates for Human Rights)
  • Legislation should mandate a crisis center for every 50,000 population, with trained staff to provide support, legal advice, and crisis intervention counseling for all complainants/survivors, including specialized services for particularly vulnerable groups. (See: UN Handbook, 3.6.1; and Crisis Centers and Hotlines, StopVAW, The Advocates for Human Rights)
    • Italy’s Law n. 38/2009 designated 1,000,000 Euros to the “national hotline for victims of persecution,” which is active twenty-four hours a day, with the aim to provide counseling and legal advice from staff with appropriate skills and to contact the police promptly in cases of urgency. See: Arts. 12, 13.
    • Japan’s Act on the Prevention of Spousal Violence and the Protection of Victims provides for the establishment of Spousal Violence Counseling and Support Centers which provide victims with counseling, referrals, emergency safety planning, self-reliance promotion, shelter information, and information about the protection order system.