Hundreds protest in Barcelona against rise in femicides
"You are not alone," Catalan equality minister tells women
Around 350 people – according to local police – gathered in Barcelona's Plaça Sant Jaume on Monday evening to protest the rise of femicides in Spain.
Several organizations – grouped under the umbrella of Novembre Feminista (Feminist November) and Ca la Dona (Woman's House) – took to the streets to condemn the latest figures: 12 women killed in December alone and a total of 48 in 2022.
The groups described the deaths as "unbearable" and cited the patriarchy as being "the most responsible" factor driving the problem.
Catalonia's equality minister, Tània Verge, called on society to do away with the masculinity that sustains gender-based violence and told women: "you are not alone."
"Not one death more"
Demonstrators – women and men of all ages – started to gather from 7pm in the square in central Barcelona that is home to both the Catalan government and Barcelona City Council.
They carried banners calling for an end to male violence and chanted slogans such as 'The night is ours, no assault without a response,' and 'Not one death more, we want to be alive and free.'
Dolo Pulido, a member of Novembre Feminista and Ca la Dona, explained that one of the objectives of the rally was to demand that the administrations put "all their resources" to help "stop the mass murders."
"Resources must be given to women who report crimes and to those who don't," she said, emphasizing too the need for education and co-education, "which transmits values of equality between women and men."
Pulido was critical of the administrations, saying their actions "fall short."
"You are not alone"
Equality minister Tània Verge, who also attended the rally, said she wanted to send a triple message. First, addressing women who are suffering from gender-based violence, she reminded them that it is "not an individual problem."
"It is the main social and political problem in the country, you are not alone," she said.
Verge also spoke to the families, friends and communities "hit hard in the last year", saying she "shares their pain" and that is working within the government to make sure "no one else goes through this."
Finally, the minister reflected on society as a whole, saying that "violence will not be eradicated" until the patriarchy is ended. "We need a profound social transformation," she concluded.