Liesl Gerntholtz

For communities in South Africa, climate change is now

SA has already warmed at a rate twice the global average, and climate change is making droughts in South Africa more extreme and more frequent

Giving survivors the care they need

Tintswalo Hospital in Acornhoek, Mpumalanga, is somewhat run down and in need of a coat of paint. From the outside there is little to suggest the 450-bed government hospital is home to an innovative research project exploring the provision of quality post-rape medical care in under-resourced, rural settings.

Protecting rights of rape survivors

For many of us working in the gender-based violence sector, the defining images of 2006 will be those from the Jacob Zuma rape trial: headlines in newspapers promising details of the "15 minutes of delicious sex"; Zuma supporters burning pictures of the complainant outside the court; and the gruelling, humiliating cross-examination of the complainant about her sexual history in a packed courtroom, writes Liesl Gerntholtz.

An end to ‘vat en sit’

There are some very important aspects of the Civil Unions Bill that have been ignored in the public debate about the proposed legislation. If it is passed into law, it will have tangible benefits for a particularly vulnerable group who currently have no recourse to the law to protect their rights. Consequently, they frequently suffer extreme hardship and economic abuse.

The law can work for women

On March 25, three organisations representing the rights of women, particularly those affected by gender-based violence, applied to the high court to intervene urgently in the criminal trial of the State v Jacob Zuma. The three organisations applied to be admitted as amici curiae, or friends of the court.

You can come to school once you’re ‘past the biting stage’

Judge Lucy Mailula of the Johannesburg High Court handed down judgement in October 2003 in an important case that had been argued before her...

Age and the right to choose

The Choice on the Termination of Pregnancy Act has survived yet another challenge by the "pro-life" movement, this time concerning the right of minors to terminate their pregnancies without the permission of their parents or guardians. The Pretoria High Court has found that a woman's constitutional right to terminate her pregnancy extends to girls under the age of 18.

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