THE COURT HAD PREVIOUSLY FOUND THAT DISPLACED WOMEN'S RIGHTS WERE BEING VIOLATED IN A SYSTEMATIC, EXTENDED AND MASSIVE MANNER AND IN THIS DECISION IT ORDERS THE GOVERNMENT TO ENACT VARIOUS MEASURES TO ADDRESS THIS SITUATION.
Judges: Manuel José Cepeda Espinosa (wrote the opinion), Jaime Córdoba Triviño, Rodrigo Escobar Gil
In a previous decision (T-025 of 2004), the Colombian Constitutional Court had held that the situation of the female displaced population was one of the gravest manifestations of unconstitutionality on the part of the government as their rights were being violated in a systematic, extended and massive manner. The Court held that the government had the obligation to the appropriate measures which, in an integral and efficient way, restored and protected women's fundamental rights. The failure to adopt such measures drove the Court to issue Court Order 092/08.
The Court Order demands that the government enacts a series of measures to prevent the disproportionate gender effect of armed conflict and displacement on women. Such measures are: (i) creating thirteen (13) programs to fill the existing gaps in public policy for the assistance of displaced persons from a gender perspective so they address the "gender risks" associated with armed conflict and the "gender facets" of forced displacement; (ii) establishing two constitutional presumptions to protect displaced women, (iii) issuing individual orders of protection on behalf of six-hundred (600) displaced women and the communication and (iv) communicating the Attorney General's office of numerous sexual crimes committed within Colombia's armed conflict.
To reach this decision, the Court identified several "gender risks" derived from armed conflict, including: a) the risk to suffer sexual abuse, rape and be subjected to other forms of sexual slavery by the armed actors; b) the risk of labor enslavement; c) the risk of having their financial provider murdered, d) the risk for their children to be forcibly recruited by armed actors, e) the risk of being persecuted and murdered by armed actors, f) risks derived from the higher discrimination and vulnerability that displaced women face, g) risks derived from contact or relations they voluntarily, accidentally or presumably sustain with members of armed groups, h) risks derived from their participation in social or human rights organizations, i) the risk of being dispossessed from their lands more easily.
Additionally, the Court identified 18 "gender facets" affecting displaced women, including, a)disregard for and violation of their right to health, especially of their sexual and reproductive rights; b)open disregard for their right to justice, truth, reparation and a guarantee of no-repetition, as victims of the armed conflict; c) severe discrimination against indigenous and afrocolombian women; d)graver obstacles to access education and work opportunities; e) patterns of structural gender violence and discrimination, which include increased risk of being subjected to sexual violence, including rape and sexual abuse, forced prostitution, sexual enslavement, trafficking for sexual exploitation, and domestic violence.
The Court ordered the Attorney General to appear before the Court six months after the Court Order to report on the progress of this mandate.