Press Release – Taxis driving message home on gender violence

Date: January 1, 1970
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If you jump into a combi during the next couple of weeks, you may just be greeted with something a bit different from the usual fare of thumping Kwaito and house beats. Launching 4 December at Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality, Tjoon’in is an audio CD designed specifically for playing in public transport as part of 16 Days of Activism

Date:                      4 December 2008
Venue:                    New Council Chambers of the Germiston Civic Centre
10:00 – 12:00          Open forum including a roundtable discussion on issues related to transport and gender violence and a presentation of Tjoon’in
12:00 – 13:00          Gender Links and Ekurhuleni will hold a cyber dialogue to further explore the issues.
Tjoon’in is an entertaining mix of music, feature reports, interviews, testimonials from survivors of violence, and radio spots highlighting various 16 Days themes, particularly domestic violence, xenophobia, human trafficking, and men as partners. Produced partially during workshops with transport stakeholders, Ekurhuleni councilors and survivors of violence, the CD features the energetic voices of YFM’s Dineo Lusenga and Hlayisanani “TC” Salani talking about everything from gun free zones to music and soccer, and how these all fit in with 16 Days of Peace.  
Few will forget when in February 2008, media, gender organisations, and the public transport sector responded to reports of first one young women, and then several, being sexually assaulted for wearing a mini skirt at the Noord Street taxi rank in Johannesburg. “Tjoonin is a tangible outcome of the challenge put by MEC for Safety and Security Firoz Cachalia to taxi associations and NGOs to turn the Noord Street taxi rank incident into a positive force for change,” said GL Director Colleen Lowe Morna. Taxi’s reach and serve millions of South Africans every day. If they can literally become a vehicle for change then we will really be going somewhere.”
The increasing awareness of the taxi industry of the need to address gender violence, especially ahead of World Cup 2010, inspired the project.  Many of the radio spots included are short dramas set in a taxi, and incorporate such issues as discrimination and disability. Men are an important and positive part of the dialogue.
An innovative project by Gender Links in partnership with Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality and the Gauteng Women in Transport, and produced with assistance from CMFD Productions, the CD is being distributed free to taxis and radio stations.  To read more and listen to audio, please visit the Gender Links website:
Deborah Walter
Gender Links
+27 (0)73 132 7032

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