National Study on the Economic Costs of Violence Against Women and Girls in Jamaica Report

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[Authors]: Bazlul H. Khondker, PhD (Team Leader), Samantha John-Aloye, PhD (Social Statistician), Lebrechtta Nana Oye Hesse-Bayne, MSc Econ (Gender and Development Specialist), [Editor]: Dr. Robin Haarr, PhD

Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) has economic costs for individuals (e.g., victims and their children), families, communities and society at-large. Several countries have estimated the costs of VAWG, in an effort to understand the economic impacts of VAWG on the national economy and to determine investments needed to lessen, if not eliminate VAWG.

There are a range of direct costs of VAWG, including costs on the healthcare, police, justice and social welfare systems, as well as costs of victim support services (e.g., shelters, counselling, legal aid). There are also indirect costs related to VAWG, such as lost employment, wages and productivity, learning time lost and harm to the well-being of VAWG survivors and their children. Ultimately, VAWG has negative effects on the lives of women and their children, which undermines poverty reduction measures.

Estimating the economic costs of VAWG enables governments to understand the importance of enacting legislation, policies, action plans and programmes aimed at ending VAWG, and allocating an appropriate budget to support effective implementation of such initiatives and provision of quality essential services to VAWG survivors and their children. Estimating the economic costs of VAWG provides a basis for evidence-based decision- and policy-making, and programme development.

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UN Women office publishing: Multi-Country Office – Caribbean
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