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Maria Elisabetta Alberti Casellati: progress in the field of combating violence against women 'will not be the result of laws alone'

“Progress in the field of combating violence against women will not be the result of laws alone. It is from the educational level, from childhood, that we need to start to develop non-violent gender relations, abandoning the stereotypes that, sometimes unconsciously, hinder the choices and life paths of many women," said Maria Elisabetta Alberti Casellati, President of the Italian Senate, addressing the PACE Standing Committee today in Rome.

"These same stereotypes still condition the lives of too many men, who are incapable of having respectful and equal relationships with women at work, in their affections and in everyday life,” she added. 

“We are called upon to undertake a major cultural change, involving the media, schools and training centres, religious communities, and places where people live together, to bring about a change in the perception of women and the relationship between the sexes”, she said.

Parliaments can make “a decisive contribution to this battle”, she added. In the Italian Senate, the Committee of Inquiry into Femicide and All Forms of Gender-based Violence “carries out excellent work of analysis and identification of the best practices to combat the phenomenon, and also provides an effective opportunity for dialogue between the competent institutions,” Ms Alberti Casellati underlined.

“There is a lot of work to be done, and there is no room for distraction,” she concluded.