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Online Violence Against Women: Let’s break the mould

Monday, March 20, 2023 - 19:00 to 20:00

The Open University’s Dr. Olga Jurasz will begin this event by sharing insight into online violence against women in Northern Ireland, drawing on her research on online violence against women and girls across all Four Nations.

Guest speakers will share personal accounts of how online violence impacts women in public life and explain the intrinsic link between online violence and domestic violence, as well as the government’s strategic plan to tackle the root cause of the societal problems of Violence Against Women and Girls, in all its forms.

Olga will be joined by Cara Hunter, Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP) Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA), who found herself on the receiving end of fake imagery circulating during the 2022 election campaign. Kelly Andrews, CEO of Belfast and Lisburn Women’s Aid, will share how cyberviolence is an increasingly prominent feature in intimate partner violence linked to harassment and stalking, as part of a pattern of behaviours by perpetrators.

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Dr Olga Jurasz

Dr. Olga Jurasz is a senior lecturer in law at the Open University Law School and Director of ObserVAW – Europe’s First Observatory on Online Violence Against Women. Her research focuses on law and policy responses to violence against women and girls. Dr Jurasz has extensive expertise in online and digital violence against women, online harms. She is the author of Online Misogyny as a Hate Crime (Routledge 2019) and Violence Against Women, Hate and Law (Palgrave Macmillan 2022) (both with K Barker). She has contributed to a number of expert evidence submissions to the national and devolved governments and international bodies including the UN Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women, the One Scotland Consultation on Amending Hate Crime Legislation in Scotland, Women and Equalities Committee, CEDAW Tribunal, the Scottish Government’s Working Group on Misogyny and Criminal Justice in Scotland.

This event is part of the Imagine! Festival of Ideas & Politics in Belfast held Monday 20 March - Sunday 26 March 2023. The Faculty of Business and Law is one of the sponsors for the festival, which has a mission to provide high-quality showcases for the discussion of contemporary political and societal issues including new ideas on politics, culture and activism.