SECTION27 is a public interest law centre that seeks to influence, develop and use the law to protect, promote and advance human rights. Our name is drawn from the section in the South African Constitution which enshrines everyone's right to health care, food, water and social security.
The ALP made a follow-up submission to the Portfolio Committee on Justice and Constitutional Development regarding the Criminal Law (Sexual Offences and Related Matters) Amendment Bill. The submission was made on 15 August 2006 based on a new draft version of the bill.
Criminal Law (Sexual Offences and Related Matters) Amendment Bill
The National Working Group on the Sexual Offences Bill made a submission on 30 October 2005. This submission begins by explaining why violence against women is an obstacle to the socio-economic development of South Africa. It then provides statistics on the extent of the problem before setting out the policies and laws which have been developed to address violence against women, or gender-based violence.
The arguments and recommendations in this submission are based on a number of human rights and public health considerations. In particular we have focused on the following four areas: the rights of the survivor of sexual assault; the rights of the accused; theimpact of the draft bill on public health measures to limit spread of HIV; and the impact of the bill on state services for survivors of sexual assault. These are not isolated concerns, being interrelated and having an impact on each other.