Combating Domestic Violence
China's NPC (National People's Congress) Standing Committee adopted the Law Against Domestic Violence (hereinafter referred to as "the law") on December 27, 2015. The law took effect on March 1, 2016. The legislation, the first of its kind in the country, marked a milestone in the development of China's legal system, in the progress of protecting Chinese citizens' rights, and in the promotion of women and children's development.
To better help Chinese resolve family disputes, China's Supreme People's Court in May 2016 designated 118 courts, at the mid and grass-roots levels across the country, as experimental courts, in which a pilot project was implemented to reform the way the courts handled cases that involved family disputes.
China's Supreme People's Court in July 2016 promulgated a document, in which the court's officials explained how victims of domestic violence should apply to courts to sign and issue restraining orders, to protect their safety and properties.
To promote implementation of the law, 24 of China's provinces, municipalities and autonomous regions by July 2017 had promulgated a combined 247 directives or documents related to cracking down on domestic violence, and on protecting the legal rights and interests of victims of domestic violence.
China's Ministry of Public Security this year plans to promulgate the directive on standardizing the work procedures used by police officers to handle cases involving domestic violence.
What needs to be done to solve difficulties in promoting implementation of the law? What must be done to help Chinese understand the law? Those issues topped the agenda of Shen Yueyue, Vice-chairperson of the NPC Standing Committee and President of the Allchina Women's Federation (ACWF), during her inspection tour to Shandong Province in September 2017. Shen led a team from the Committee for Internal and Judicial Affairs, under NPC, to conduct the inspection. The committee also organized teams to conduct inspection tours of Yunnan, Jilin and Sichuan provinces between April-november 2017.
The ACWF in December 2017 promulgated the (trial) directive on standardizing the work procedures used by officials of women's federations, at all levels across the country, to handle cases involving domestic violence.
The federations during the past two years have provided training on publicizing information about the laws and regulations pertaining to the protection of women and children's legal rights and interests, to help residents improve their understanding of the laws and regulations.
In addition, the federations have organized various activities to promote both family virtues and good family traditions, so residents can have a better understanding of the importance of respecting and caring for their families' members.
All of the above-mentioned activities were well received. Many of the participants, most of whom were women, said the events not only raised their awareness about the importance of fighting domestic violence, but also helped them improve their ability to protect their rights and interests.