UN Authority Figures

UN Commission on the Status of Women: Bahrain

A Filipino maid was rescued from her employer in Bahrain after she posted a desperate cry for help on her Facebook page that she had been raped and beaten by her employer's son. Her employer told her to have an abortion if she fell pregnant.
Source: South China Morning Post, April 16, 2015

Mission of the Commission on the Status of Women: "The Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) is the principal global intergovernmental body exclusively dedicated to the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women... The CSW is instrumental in promoting women's rights, documenting the reality of women's lives throughout the world, and shaping global standards on gender equality and the empowerment of women." (Commission on the Status of Women website, "Overview")

Term of office: 2017-2021

Bahrain's Record on Women's rights:
"The law does not address spousal rape... There were reports of domestic violence against women and children... There were reports of instances in which employers allegedly raped female domestic workers, but the victim did not seek legal redress, since victims cannot prove guilt in court without the testimony of witnesses to the crime... No government policies or laws explicitly address domestic violence. Human rights organizations alleged spousal abuse of women was widespread... 30 percent of women had experienced some form of domestic abuse. Women rarely sought legal redress for violence due to fear of social reprisal or stigma. Authorities devoted little public attention to the problem... the penal code provides a lenient sentence for the killing of a spouse caught in the act of adultery, whether male or female. ... sexual harassment remained a widespread problem for women, especially foreigners employed as domestic workers and in other low-level service jobs... Women faced discrimination under the law. A woman cannot transmit nationality to her spouse or children... Women have the right to initiate divorce proceedings, but both Shia and Sunni religious courts may refuse the request... The basis for family law is sharia as interpreted by Sunnis and Shia... Family law is complicated further by numerous Sunni-Shia marriages in which it is not always clear which courts have jurisdiction... In the absence of a direct male heir,...Sunni women inherit only a portion, as governed by sharia, and the brothers or other male relatives of the deceased divide the balance... discrimination against women was systemic, especially in the workplace."
(U.S. State Department's Country Report on Human Rights Practices 2015, Bahrain)