Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Tuk-tuk drivers recruited to battle gender violence

Tuk-tuk drivers recruited to battle gender violence

Tuk-tuk drivers recruited to battle gender violence

A civil society group has pinpointed an unlikely group to help solve the problem of gender-based violence: tuk-tuk drivers.

People Health Development (PHD), an NGO, yesterday held an event in Phnom Penh’s Russey Keo district to highlight the progress of tuk-tuk drivers it has trained to end violence against women and girls.

PHD teaches drivers different ways to help, from reporting cases of domestic violence to offering vulnerable women rides to safety.

“We noticed that tuk-tuk drivers could be key agents of change in the community – they see everything, they can report on things,” said Ou Ratanak, PHD’s executive director. “We want them to be the key drivers in combating gender violence.”

Ratanak said drivers were uniquely placed to witness and intervene in cases of abuse or harassment. They frequently drive groups of women to work and are deeply embedded in local communities.

“Whenever we ask them what they’ve seen, they always say, ‘I’ve seen a lot, I hear a lot, but what can I do?’” Ratanak said. “So we create a system for them.”

One prominent gender expert agreed that tuk-tuk drivers could use their ubiquity to help stop violence against women.

“Tuk-tuk drivers are in public places all the time and often wait for clients at night,” said Ros Sopheap, executive director of Gender and Development for Cambodia, an NGO. “If they realise they can stop gender-based violence, I think that’s really good.”

PHD said 180 drivers in three city districts had taken part in trainings. It aims to train a total of 240 before the project ends in November.

MOST VIEWED

  • Virus tops 84 with new cases in S’ville

    The Ministry of Health on Sunday night confirmed another 31 cases of coronavirus infections, bringing the Kingdom’s total to 84 and it highest daily tally. There have been no fatalities thus far. The latest cases were found in 29 French tourists and their two Cambodian tour guides

  • Kingdom’s virus toll tops 84, Cambodians in Thailand rush home

    The Ministry of Health on Sunday night confirmed another 31 cases of coronavirus infections, bringing the Kingdom’s total to 84 and its highest daily tally. There have been no fatalities thus far. The latest cases were found in 29 French tourists and their two Cambodian tour guides

  • Mysterious century-old structure found at bottom of Angkor pond

    The Apsara National Authority (ANA) has discovered a mysterious 1,000-year-old structure of a wooden building at the bottom of a pond after the Angkor Wat temple’s conservation team completed restoring its northern cave. The deputy director at ANA’s Angkor International Research and Documentation

  • NBC calls for cashless payments

    The National Bank of Cambodia (NBC) has urged government ministries, financial institutions and the public to conduct cashless payments via electronic systems where possible to combat the spread of Covid-19. “To contribute to the prevention of Covid-19, the National Bank of Cambodia encourages financial institutions

  • CEO held for fraud in Siem Reap

    Over 200 individuals gathered in front of the Siem Reap Provincial Court last week to ask that Dim Suonnath, the CEO of a real estate company being held for fraud, take responsibility for compensating some 2,000 residents who invested with him. The request was denied. Suonnath responded

  • Ministry calls for home schooling

    Minister of Education, Youth and Sport, Hang Chuon Naron appealed to parents of students to provide home education in a proper environment and help them obtain more learning materials. The ministry also allowed schools to take a premature vacation after several people tested positive for