Throughout this knowledge module, reference to certain provisions or sections of a piece of legislation, part of a legal judgment, or aspect of a practice does not imply that the legislation, judgment, or practice is considered in its entirety to be a good example or a promising practice.

Some of the laws cited herein may contain provisions which authorize the death penalty. In light of the United Nations General Assembly resolutions 62/14963/16865/206, and 67/176 calling for a moratorium on and ultimate abolition of capital punishment, the death penalty should not be included in sentencing provisions for crimes of violence against women and girls.

Other Provisions Related to Domestic Violence LawsResources for Developing Legislation on Domestic Violence
Sexual Harassment in Sport Tools for Drafting Sexual Harassment Laws and Policies
Immigration Provisions Resources for developing legislation on sex trafficking of women and girls
Child Protection Provisions Resources on Forced and Child Marriage
Other provisions related to dowry-related and domestic violence laws
Related Tools

Treatment or diversion programs for perpetrators

Last edited: March 01, 2011

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Legislation should provide that if intervention, treatment or diversion programs (pretrial diversion programs are alternatives to prosecution which seek to divert offenders with no prior offences from traditional criminal justice processing into a program of supervision and services) are prescribed for perpetrators, the operators of such programs must work in close cooperation with survivor service providers to enable constant feedback from the complainant/survivor about the recurrence of violence. Legislation should provide that all sentences to alternative, treatment, or diversion programs are to be handed down only in cases where there will be continuous monitoring of the case by justice officials and survivor organizations to ensure the survivor’s safety and the effectiveness of the sentence.  Legislation should require that such alternative sentences be monitored and reviewed on a regular basis.  Legislation should require immediate reports to probation officers and police about recurring violence.

See: UN Handbook 3.11.6; The Toolkit to End Violence Against Women, p. 14

Example: the Criminalization of Violence against Women Law (2007) of Costa Rica (Spanish only) includes detailed conditions on when alternative sentences may be imposed, and on the alternatives which are available. Spain’s Organic Act 1/2004 of 28 December on Integrated Protection Measures against Gender Violence (2004) provides for suspension of certain penalties (under two years in jail) if the perpetrator participates in an intervention programme. (Article 35)