Empowering Change: UNODC and Pakistani police train women officers in gender-responsive policing

US Embassy in Islamabad via Flickr
June 28, 2024

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) collaborated with the National Police Bureau (NPB) in Islamabad, Pakistan to conduct a comprehensive series of training sessions titled ‘Transforming Communities through Gender-Responsive Policing Training.’

Opening the training session series, Dr. Jeremy Milsom, the Country Representative of UNODC in Pakistan (COPAK), addressed the participants, emphasising the global increase in GBV cases. He reaffirmed UNODC’s commitment to combating gender-based violence (GBV) against women and girls, emphasizing its significance as both a security concern and a development issue in Pakistan.

The programme was exclusively attended by women police officers from the Islamabad Police, Punjab Police, and the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA); aimed to improve the expertise of female law enforcement officials in addressing GBV.

The participants were introduced to foundational concepts of gender, in the context of human rights in Pakistan and the country's constitution. The programme also focused on:

- Legislation related to GBV and the nuanced handling of GBV survivors.

- The importance of standard operating procedures, psychological considerations, and the roles of investigative officers in GBV cases.

- Practical experience in conducting survivor interviews and understanding the root causes of gender-based violence through interactive group presentations and role-playing exercises.

- Forensics and crime scene investigation, i.e., preserving evidence, maintaining the integrity of the crime scene, and ensuring a thorough and sensitive approach to GBV cases from the initial response.

- The critical responsibilities of first responders.

Notably, across all sessions, survey data revealed that 80% of participants had not previously received instruction in the above areas.

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