Miss Peru’s “Measurements”
PERU – On October 29, 2017, Miss Peru beauty pageant contestants surprised viewers in a unique protest. When the women were asked to reveal their body “measurements,” instead of saying something like 36-26-36, one by one the women shared alarming numbers about the prevalence of violence against women in Peru.
The first women to make the stand was Camille Canicoba Llaro of Lima. Llaro gave her “measurements” as “2,202 CASES OF MURDERED WOMEN REPORTED IN THE LAST NINE YEARS IN MY COUNTRY.”
Afterwards, Melina Machuca of Cajamarca stated, “MY MEASUREMENTS ARE: MORE THAN 80 PERCENT OF WOMEN IN MY CITY SUFFER FROM VIOLENCE.”
Because the protest was planned in along with the pageant’s organizers in advance, viewers also saw images of female victims of Peru’s continued violence as the beauty queens shared their “measurements” with the world.
Peru is one of the most violent nations for women in the Americas. For many Peruvian women, violence and sexual harassment are a part of everyday life and perpetrators either get away with their crimes or face light sentences. Moreover, sexual abuse of minors, human trafficking of women and girls, and domestic abuse are all common.  This is so common that national surveys show that nearly 40% of Peruvian women experience physical and sexual violence in their lives, and if psychological and verbal abuse is included this number increases to 70%.
Peru has had enough. Most recently, more women are actively pursuing change after two high profile cases in July 2016 when men received light sentences after their attacks on women. Because of such cases, more woman began to take a public stand on the streets and on social media.
These latest flames of protest are also part of a much broader movement throughout Central and South America which started when the Mexican poet and activist Susana Chávez Castillo was murdered in 2011. The poet’s coined phrase, “NI UNA MUJER MENOS, NI UNA MUERTE MÁS,” or in English, “NOT ANOTHER DEATH, NOT A WOMAN LESS,” has lived on as a face of the movement. Many activists also use the hashtag #NiUnaMenos, similar to the #MeToo hashtag circulating in recent months.
Violence against women is not only a Peruvian or Latino problem, it is an epidemic affecting women worldwide, even for women here in the United States. Sadly, women can be victims of violence both inside and out of the workplace. As such, New York City passed a law known as the Victims of Gender-Motivated Violence Protection Act (“VGMVPA”), to protect individuals from acts of violence motived by the individuals’ gender. While perpetrators who act out such violence may be criminally prosecuted, the VGMVPA also provides victims with the opportunity to also seek civil remedies too against their attackers. Moreover, victims may also pursue other claims in civil law such as assault, battery, and sexual harassment.
If you feel you have suffered discrimination or sexual harassment on the job or at your college campus contact one of our New York City sexual harassment attorneys at the Derek Smith Law Group, PLLC today for a free consultation. The experienced New York City sexual harassment attorneys at the Derek Smith Law Group, PLLC, have years of experience litigating claims of sexual harassment, both federally and at the state level. Working together with our Philadelphia sexual harassment attorneys, we have recovered millions on behalf of our clients. If you feel you have been sexually harassed at work, please give our talented attorneys a call, toll free, at 1877 4 NYLAWS, for your free consultation.


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Attorney Derek T. Smith is an experienced sexual harassment & discrimination law litigator who has particular experience in the areas of workplace discrimination, sexual harassment, wrongful termination, civil rights litigation, employment law and civil litigation.

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