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Thursday, March 21, 2013

Agreed Conclusions

UN COMMISSION ON THE STATUS OF WOMEN - SOME RIGHTS WON, BUT MORE CHALLENGES AHEAD

CSW 57 Draft Agreed Conclusions - Advance Unedited Version:
Rowan Harvey - 20 March 2013

 It may not sound like much, but the attempted insertion of the word "recalls" in place of "reaffirms" about previous women's rights agreements by the Holy See in the first line of the proposed draft document set the tone for much of the negotiations at this year's UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW).

Coming in a reference to the ground-breaking 1995 Beijing Platform for Action, it hinted that not all countries represented at the CSW viewed progress made in the past few decades on women's rights as positive. Some had come to the negotiating table with the intention of trying to turn back the clock. The efforts of Iran, Russia, Syria and the Holy See were particularly passionate.
That we have an agreed outcome document from the negotiations at all is cause for celebration. And there were gains that suggest progress in the right direction.
One of the most significant was new text on protection for female human rights defenders – women working and campaigning for women's rights who face violence both because of their work and because of their gender. Unsurprisingly, given the records of rights abuses in many of the countries present, there was push-back on this and its inclusion caused genuine celebration among the activists present, many of whom face backlash and hostility every day.

One of the hardest fought areas in the document was sexual and reproductive rights. This was one of the key rallying points for conservative forces, including anti-choice organisations that piled enormous resources into influencing the process. Hundreds of collective hours were put into combating their efforts by women's organisations, and some progress was made.
Most notable was new language recommending that emergency contraception is provided for women who have been raped, an absolutely vital and humane basic service.
Another striking victory was a call for the development of comprehensive sex education. Often portrayed by opponents as teaching kids to have sex, it is important that countries were able to see past the misinformation and recognise that this is about ensuring young people have the information they need to make informed decisions and protect their health.

If we've learned anything from the process it's that in UN negotiations, semantics matter; language against "child, early and forced" marriage rather than just "child" marriage was an important gain, recognising that in some contexts girls are no longer considered children after their first period, and extending the document to cover tens of thousands of adolescent girls married every year.
There were some losses that tempered the celebrations. We always knew that sexual orientation and gender identity would be hotly contested issues. Unfortunately, this was one of the areas where agreement couldn't be reached and all references were dropped from the text. Equally worrying, all references to protection for sex workers were dropped. Lesbian, bisexual and transgender people and sex workers are targeted for attack and, however conservative our views, we should at least be able to agree that such violence is serious and unacceptable.

In many ways the CSW was like stepping back in time. Much of the discussion might have been familiar to women campaigning in the 1970s, or even the 1920s. For example, language on "intimate partner violence", which recognises that not all women are married or in relationships formally recognised by the state was struck from the final text.

There was a push towards strengthening "the family" – in this context a traditional concept of family based on marriage between a man and a woman – as the most important unit in society for combating violence, rather than providing support for women as individuals. While families are important, one of the places that women are most likely to face violence is the home and it is vital that they are able to access services tailored to their needs. Fortunately, arguments based on ideology lost out to arguments based on evidence in the final text.

Perhaps the biggest victory came right at the end. Recognising that negotiations were unlikely to finish on time, the CSW chair, Marjon V Kamara, proposed a new draft based on the negotiations to that point – a take it or leave it option. One of her changes was the deletion of a hotly debated paragraph reaffirming the sovereign right of each country to implement CSW recommendations "consistent with national laws and development priorities, with full respect for the various religious and ethical values and cultural backgrounds of its people". This paragraph sent a dangerous signal that women's rights are optional and provided a get-out clause for unsupportive governments. It was a huge relief to many to see it removed.
The outcome could have been much worse. As delegates return home, thoughts are already turning to the battle ahead. Next year's topic – the agenda for development when the millennium goals expire in 2015 – proved contentious this year, with attempts to introduce progressive language struck down as quickly as they were proposed. This is essentially new territory for the CSW and, if this year was anything to go by, we're going to have to fight every step of the way. With the future of half the world at stake, we can't afford not to.
Rowan Harvey is women's rights advocacy adviser for ActionAid UK.

Link to the CSW Draft Agreed Coclusions


CSW 57 Draft Agreed Conclusions - Advance Unedited Version:

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Statement by US representative to ECOSOC



Explanation of Position by Terri Robl , U.S. Deputy Representative to ECOSOC, on the Agreed Conclusions of the 57thSession of the Commission on the Status of Women, March 15, 2013

Madame Chair,

The United States welcomes today’s adoption of the Agreed Conclusions on the theme of the elimination of violence against women and girls.  This agreement is a testament to both the gravity of the issue and the seriousness with which it was treated by the members of the Commission.

We applaud your tremendous leadershipAmbassador Kamara, in chairing this session, and the tireless work of the Philippine facilitators to bring us together in this effort.  We would also like to express our gratitude to Executive Director Bachelet and her team for their invaluable contributions throughout this session.

These Agreed Conclusions represent an important step toward ensuring that all women and girls around the world live productive and safe lives, free from the scourge of violence and abuse. It provides a foothold to continue the unfinished work of empowering women and girls in all fora:  it reaffirms the critical role of women human rights defenders and it reinforces that States have a duty, regardless of their political, economic, and cultural systems, to promote and protect all human rights and fundamental freedoms of women and girls.

We are particularly pleased that the Agreed Conclusions clearly acknowledge the importance of investing in and protecting sexual and reproductive health and reproductive rights by reaffirming ICPD Program of Action, the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, and the outcomes of their review processes.  Reproductive rights and the full implementation of these international agreements are essential to the prevention, mitigation and elimination of violence against women and girls. The United States reaffirms our continuing commitment to protect and promote reproductive rights. We are also pleased that the Agreed Conclusions address trafficking in persons, the prevention of which is a significant priority for the United States.

While delegates have shown flexibility in reaching an outcome we can all be proud of, we lament that some important aspects were left out.  Most notably, we believe that the Agreed Conclusions should and must apply to all women, regardless of their sexual orientation or/and gender identity.  We regret that some delegations prevented this recognition explicitly, but are confident that a day will come soon when we are able to do so.  We also hold that the term intimate partner violence more accurately captures the range of relationships where abuse can take hold, and will continue to press for that important distinction.

Today’s agreement is only a beginning.  We must all now continue the vital work – here at the United Nations, in our capitals, and in our schools, hospitals, courts and homes – to ensure that women and girls around the world have the safety and dignity they deserve.

Thank you.

###



Peggy Kerry
NGO Liaison
United States Mission to the United Nations
Office of Press and Public Diplomacy

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Congratulations !


During the 57th Session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women, governments from 45 countries met, and reached consensus on important matters addressing violence against women and girls.  Violence in all its forms affects all women and girls, either directly or indirectly.  It is commendable that all governments agreed that violence was a critical factor affecting the status of women, and that they were able to reach agreement in ways to address it.

This document can lead to strong, active implementation in all countries.  The diversity of the world, and the diversity of language, culture, religion and economics, worked to divide their attention, but in the end the world was united.  They overcame these differences to move forward on this scourge afflicting all segments of society.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

CSW Agreed Conclusions signed


CSW Agreed Conclusions signed tonight.  Annette Lawson March 15 2013
There is joy, relief and an outpouring of applause as Governments gathered in New York at the UN to work on a text aiming to prevent violence in all its manifestations against women and girls, reached agreement with their backs to the wire at this vital 57th session of CSW focusing on the prevention of violence against women and girls.  Their negotiators  certainly needed dinner and sleep since they had been working until the small hours overnight and had been at it again all day today (Friday 15 March 2013). Evidently Michelle Bachelet, the CEO of UN Women called in and inspired them to greater efforts to reach a good outcome because they were there not just for themselves or even for their governments but for the women and girls of the world. She has led this CSW to success. Later she announced she would be returning to Chile.  Perhaps we will see her President again. And UN Women must find another world leader.
The result is due not only to marvellous work of the negotiators but also to the persistence and advice of the more than 600 NGOs gathered too, and the real partnerships forged between them and some governments – certainly between ourselves and our UK government.
The text has much to welcome in it that should really make a difference,  enabling change and underpinning  prevention with strong paragraphs on resourcing and the range of services that are required. Education is stressed and the need for boys and men to take responsibility for their actions is important as are the paragraphs that give powerful support to the NGOs, particularly to women’s organisations which have the expertise to work from grass roots through to the advisory levels of government in a collective mode.  Recognition of women’s sexual and reproductive rights  and to have their rights embedded in law and in practice is a great win. The ending of impunity from punishment of the perpetrators is stressed and there are strong paragraphs on international cooperation and on trafficking especially in relation to sexual exploitation. There is a good paragraph on the harmful effects of the exponential rise of porn on the web and of cyber bullying and cyber stalking as well as the positive uses of social media and of the internet for change in attitudes and behaviours.
it was made clear that religion, culture and tradition cannot be used to excuse violations of the human rights of women and girls and the wording that suggested States should have sovereignty over their actions, thus making a mockery of the global nature of the UN, was fortunately withdrawn at the last. However, the trading required to remove this immensely damaging clause has meant there are some disturbing gaps.
Alas, women who love other women are not included, the words, ‘gender identity’ and ‘gender orientation’ did not make it and nor did ‘intimate partner’ or ‘intimate relationships’, which would have given some recognition to violence occurring outside of marriage but within partner relations.  Alas, too, the word, ‘prostitution’, is also absent.  Given it forms part of the Beijing Platform for Action which is reaffirmed in the preamble, I am sure we can find ways to work around it and this sentence is in:
‘Accelerate public awareness, education and training to discourage the demand that fosters all forms of exploitation.’
Indeed!


Statement by UN Women





UN COMMISSION ON THE STATUS OF WOMEN 57 DRAFT AGREED CONCLUSIONS - UN WOMEN
March 15, 2013 - At the conclusion of the 57th session of the Commission on the Status of Women, UN Women welcomes the outcome of the meeting. The Agreed Conclusions are a testimony to the commitment of Member States to do the right thing, to prevent and eliminate violence against women and girls. In the last two weeks during the meeting in New York, and in the lead-up to this session, we witnessed global engagement and mobilization, high-profile advocacy by civil society, and determined leadership by many Member States. Expectations of the world’s women and girls were extremely high for this session of the Commission.

Violence against women is a universal problem that requires, and has now received, a universal response. Violence occurs in multiple forms in all countries and settings; it harms women and their families and communities, impedes development, and costs countries billions of dollars annually in healthcare costs and lost productivity. In 2003, when the Commission took up violence against women and human rights, Member States were unable to reach agreement. Thus I am particularly heartened that agreement was reached this year to end violence against women and girls. This agreement comes in unison with rising voices worldwide saying enough is enough.

The document adopted by the Commission condemns in the strongest terms the pervasive violence against women and girls, and calls for increased attention and accelerated action for prevention and response. UN Women welcomes the important focus on prevention, including through education and awareness-raising, and addressing gender inequalities in the political, economic and social spheres. The best way to end violence against women is to stop it from happening in the first place.
The document highlights the importance of putting in place multi-sectoral services for survivors of violence, including for health, psychological support and counseling, social support in the short and long term. It draws attention to the need for services to protect the right to sexual and reproductive health. Punishment of perpetrators is also highlighted as a critical measure to end impunity, as is the need to improve the evidence base and availability of data to inform an effective response.
By adopting this document, governments have made clear that discrimination and violence against women and girls has no place in the 21st century. They have reaffirmed their commitment and responsibility to undertake concrete action to end violence against women and girls and promote and protect women’s human rights and fundamental freedoms.

The agreement is one step more for realizing the rights and dignity of women and girls. But we cannot stop here. We need to do so much more. Words now need to be matched with deeds, with action. Now is the time for implementation and accountability. We must continue moving forward with courage, conviction and commitment.

UN Women, together with our partners in the UN system, will continue to advance the rights of women and girls through strong and coordinated support. We will work with Member States to turn the Agreed Conclusions of the Commission on the Status of Women into concrete results for women and girls.

We will move forward and build on the basis of the international agreements on women’s rights reached over many years, as articulated in the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), the Beijing Platform for Action, the Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development, and other agreements and treaties.

There is no turning back. We will keep moving forward to the day when women and girls can live free of fear, violence and discrimination. The 21st century is the century of inclusion and women’s full and equal rights and participation.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Bachelet leaving UN Women. And returning to Chile.

See the following article. http://www.calgaryherald.com/news/ExChilean+president+Michelle+Bachelet+says+shes+leaving+Women/8107402/story.html

Bachelet leaving and returning to politics in Chile.

Agreed Conclusions!

Yes! We got agreement on the following. These are what I understand are the unedited Agreed Conclusions.

Good work by governments, the facilitator, and especially the NGOs!

Commission on the Status of Women
57th session
4 – 15 March 2013
15 March 2013, 5 pm

The elimination and prevention of
all forms of violence against women and girls

Draft agreed conclusions

1. (and 2 quin) The Commission on the Status of Women reaffirms the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, the outcome documents of the twenty-third special session of the General Assembly, and the declarations adopted by the Commission on the occasion of the tenth and fifteenth anniversaries of the Fourth World Conference on Women. [AGREED AD REF]

The Commission also reaffirms the international commitments made at relevant United Nations summits and conferences in the area of gender equality and the empowerment of women, including in the Programme of Action at the International Conference on Population and Development and the key actions for its further implementation.

2. The Commission reaffirms that the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women and the Convention on the Rights of the Child, and the Optional Protocols thereto, as well as other relevant conventions and treaties, provide an international legal framework and a comprehensive set of measures for the elimination and prevention of all forms of discrimination and violence against women and girls, as a cross-cutting issue addressed in different international instruments. [AGREED AD REF]
2 bis. The Commission recalls the rules of international humanitarian law, including the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and the Additional Protocols thereto of 1977. [AGREED AD REF]

2 ter (combined with 8 bis): The Commission recalls the inclusion of gender-related crimes and crimes of sexual violence in the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, as well as the recognition by the ad hoc international criminal tribunals that rape and other forms of sexual violence can constitute a war crime, a crime against humanity or a constitutive act with respect to genocide or torture.

2 quat. The Commission acknowledges also the important role in the prevention and elimination of discrimination and violence against women and girls played by regional conventions, instruments and initiatives and their follow-up mechanisms, in respective regions and countries. [AGREED AD REF]

3. The Commission reaffirms the commitment to the full and effective implementation of and follow-up to all relevant resolutions of the General Assembly, in particular the Declaration on the Elimination of all Forms of Violence Against Women, and the Economic and Social Council and its subsidiary bodies on the elimination and prevention of all forms of violence against women and girls. It also reaffirms its previous agreed conclusions on violence against women (1998) and on elimination of discrimination and violence against the girl child (2007).
New 3 bis. The Commission recalls Security Council resolutions 1325 (2000) of 31 October 2000, 1820 (2008) of 19 June 2008, 1888 (2009) of 30 September 2009, 1889 (2009) of 5 October 2009 and 1960 (2010) of 16 December 2010 on women and peace and security and all relevant Security Council resolutions on children and armed conflict, including resolutions 1882 (2009) of 4 August 2009 and 1998 (2011) of 12 July 2011 on armed conflict and post-conflict situations.
New 3 ter The Commission also recalls Human Rights Council resolutions 17/11 of 17 June 2011 on accelerating efforts to eliminate all forms of violence against women: ensuring due diligence in protection, 20/6 of 5 July 2012 on the elimination of discrimination against women and 20/12 of 5 July 2012 on accelerating efforts to eliminate all forms of violence against women: remedies for women who have been subjected to violence.
New 4 supra combined with 6.  The Commission affirms that violence against women and girls is rooted in historical and structural inequality in power relations between women and men, and persists in every country in the world as a pervasive violation of the enjoyment of human rights. Gender-based violence is a form of discrimination that seriously violates and impairs or nullifies the enjoyment by women and girls of all human rights and fundamental freedoms. Violence against women and girls is characterized by the use and abuse of power and control in public and private spheres, and is intrinsically linked with gender stereotypes that underlie and perpetuate such violence, as well as other factors that can increase women’s and girls’ vulnerability to such violence. [AGREED AD REF]
4. The Commission stresses that “violence against women” means any act of gender-based violence that results in, or is likely to result in, physical, sexual, psychological harm or suffering to women and girls, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or in private life. The Commission also notes the economic and social harm caused by such violence. [AGREED AD REF]

5. The Commission strongly condemns all forms of violence against women and girls. It recognizes their different forms and manifestations, in different contexts, settings, circumstances and relationships, and that domestic violence remains the most prevalent form that affects women of all social strata across the world. It also notes that women and girls who face multiple forms of discrimination are exposed to increased risk of violence.

7 quin combined with 11 ter The Commission urges States to strongly condemn violence against women and girls committed in armed conflict and post-conflict situations, and recognizes that sexual and gender-based violence affects victims and survivors, families, communities and societies, and calls for effective measures of accountability and redress as well as effective remedies.

7 oct. The Commission stresses that the right to education is a human right, and that eliminating illiteracy, ensuring equal access to education, in particular in rural and remote areas, and closing the gender gap at all levels of education empowers women and girls and thereby contributes to the elimination of all forms of discrimination and violence against women and girls. [AGREED AD REF]

3 quint. See 8 quat

7. The Commission urges States to strongly condemn all forms of violence against women and girls and to refrain from invoking any custom, tradition or religious consideration to avoid their obligations with respect to its elimination as set out in the Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women.

7 ter. The Commission recognizes that all human rights are universal, indivisible and interdependent and interrelated and that the international community must treat human rights globally in a fair and equal manner, on the same footing and with the same emphasis, and stresses that, while the significance of national and regional particularities and various historical, cultural and religious backgrounds must be borne in mind, it is the duty of States regardless of their political, economic and cultural systems to promote and protect all human rights and fundamental freedoms.
7 quat. Switzerland withdrawn

8 quat with 3 quin The Commission reaffirms that women and men have the right to enjoy, on an equal basis, all their human rights and fundamental freedoms. It urges States to prevent all violations of all human rights and fundamental freedoms of women and girls and to devote particular attention to abolishing practices and legislation that discriminate against women and girls, or perpetuate and condone violence against them. [AGREED AD REF]


9, new 9 bis and 12 bis. The Commission stresses that the realization of gender equality and the empowerment of women, including women’s economic empowerment and full and equal access to resources, and their full integration into the formal economy in particular in economic decision-making as well as their full and equal participation in public and political life is essential for addressing the structural and underlying causes of violence against women and girls. [AGREED AD REF]

(second half of 9/new 9 bis/12 bis, split in two) The Commission also recognizes the persistence of obstacles that remain for the prevention and elimination of all forms of violence against women and girls, and that the prevention and response to such violence requires States to act, at all levels, at each and every opportunity in a comprehensive and holistic manner that recognizes the linkages between violence against women and girls and other issues, such as education, health, HIV and AIDS, poverty eradication, food security, peace and security, humanitarian assistance and crime prevention. [AGREED AD REF]

6 bis. The Commission recognizes that women’s poverty and lack of empowerment, as well as their marginalization resulting from their exclusion from social and economic policies and from the benefits of education and sustainable development, can place them at increased risk of violence, and that violence against women impedes the social and economic development of communities and States, as well as the achievement of the internationally agreed development goals, including the Millennium Development Goals. [AGREED AD REF]

9 ter The Commission recognizes that violence against women has both short- and long-term adverse consequences on their health, including their sexual and reproductive health, and the enjoyment of their human rights, and that respecting, promoting sexual and reproductive health, and protecting and fulfilling reproductive rights, in accordance with the Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development, the Beijing Platform for Action and the outcome documents of their review conferences, is a necessary condition to achieve gender equality and the empowerment of women to enable them to enjoy all their human rights and fundamental freedoms, and to prevent and mitigate violence against women.
9 quat merged into 9 ter

11 bis. The Commission expresses deep concern about violence against women and girls in public spaces, including sexual harassment, especially when it is being used to intimidate women and girls who are exercising any of their human rights and fundamental freedoms. [AGREED AD REF]
7 sext supra) The Commission expresses concern about violent gender-related killings of women and girls, while recognizing efforts made to address this form of violence in different regions, including in the countries where the concept of femicide or feminicide has been incorporated in national legislation. [AGREED AD REF]

New para on small arms: The Commission recognizes that illicit use of and illicit trade in small arms and light weapons aggravates violence, inter alia, against women and girls; [AGREED AD REF]

7 sext. and 7 sept The Commission recognizes the vulnerability of older women and the particular risk of violence they face, and stresses the urgent need to address violence and discrimination against them, especially in the light of the growing proportion of older people in the world’s population. [AGREED AD REF]

New para: The Commission reaffirms that indigenous women often suffer multiple forms of discrimination and poverty which increase their vulnerability to all forms of violence; and stresses the need to seriously address violence against indigenous women and girls. [AGREED AD REF]
8. The Commission stresses that all States have the obligation, at all levels, to use all appropriate means of a legislative, political, economic, social and administrative nature in order to promote and protect all human rights and fundamental freedoms of women and girls, and must exercise due diligence to prevent, investigate, prosecute and punish the perpetrators of violence against women and girls and end impunity, and to provide protection as well as access to appropriate remedies for victims and survivors. [AGREED AD REF]
10 supra. The Commission recognizes the important role of the community, in particular men and boys, as well as civil society, in particular women’s and youth organizations, in the efforts to eliminate all forms of violence against women and girls. [AGREED AD REF]

10 bis. The Commission acknowledges the strategic and coordinating role of national machineries for the advancement of women, which should be placed at the highest possible level in government, for the elimination of discrimination and violence against women and girls, and the need to endow these machineries with the necessary human and sufficient financial resources to enable them to function effectively. The Commission also acknowledges the contribution of National Human Rights Institutions where they exist. [AGREED AD REF]

12 sext. The Commission recognizes the important role of the United Nations system, in particular of the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN-Women), in addressing discrimination and violence against women and girls at the global, regional and national levels and in assisting States, upon their request, in their efforts to eliminate and prevent all forms of violence against women and girls. [AGREED AD REF]

ii) The Commission stresses the importance of data collection on the prevention and elimination of violence against women and girls, and in that regard takes note of the work of the Statistical Commission towards a set of indicators on violence against women. [AGREED AD REF]

10. The Commission welcomes the progress made in addressing violence against women and girls such as the adoption of relevant laws and policies, the implementation of preventive measures, the establishment of protection and appropriate support services for victims and survivors and improvement in data collection, analysis and research. In this regard, the Commission welcomes the contributions and participation of governments at all levels, and all relevant stakeholders in efforts to address violence against women and girls in a holistic manner. [AGREED AD REF]
11. The Commission recognizes that despite progress made, significant gaps and challenges remain in fulfilling commitments and bridging the implementation gap in addressing the scourge of violence against women and girls. The Commission is in particular concerned about: insufficient gender-sensitive policies; inadequate implementation of legal and policy frameworks; inadequate collection of data, analysis and research; lack of financial and human resources and insufficient allocation of such resources; and that existing efforts are not always comprehensive, coordinated, consistent, sustained, transparent and adequately monitored and evaluated. [AGREED AD REF]

12. merged into 14

13. The Commission urges Governments, at all levels, and as appropriate, with the relevant entities of the United Nations system, international and regional organizations, within their respective mandates and bearing in mind national priorities, and invites national human rights institutions where they exist, civil society, including non-governmental organizations, the private sector, employer organizations, trade unions, media and other relevant actors, as applicable, to take the following actions: [AGREED AD REF]

A. Strengthening implementation of legal and policy frameworks and accountability
a) (includes a and a alt): Consider ratifying or acceding to, as a particular matter of priority, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women and the Convention on the Rights of the Child and their respective Optional Protocols, limit the extent of any reservations, formulate any such reservations as precisely and as narrowly as possible to ensure that no reservations are incompatible with the object and purpose of the Conventions, review their reservations regularly with a view to withdrawing them and withdraw reservations that are contrary to the object and purpose of the relevant treaty; and implement them fully by, inter alia, putting in place effective national legislation and policies, and encourages State parties in their reporting to relevant treaty bodies to include requested information on measures to address violence against women and girls; [AGREED AD REF]
g ter) Encourage the use of all relevant sources of international law, international guidelines and best practices regarding protection of victims and survivors to combat violence against women and girls; [AGREED AD REF]
b) Adopt, as appropriate, review, and ensure the accelerated and effective implementation of laws and comprehensive measures that criminalize violence against women and girls, and that provide for multidisciplinary and gender-sensitive preventive and protective measures such as emergency barring orders and protection orders, the investigation, submission for prosecution and appropriate punishment of perpetrators to end impunity, support services that empower victims and survivors, as well as access to appropriate civil remedies and redress; [AGREED AD REF]
c bis) Address and eliminate as a matter of priority domestic violence through adopting, strengthening and implementing legislation that prohibits such violence, prescribes punitive measures and establishes adequate legal protection against such violence;
b ter) Strengthen national legislation, where appropriate, to punish violent gender-related killings of women and girls and integrate specific mechanisms or policies to prevent, investigate and eradicate such deplorable forms of gender-based violence. [AGREED AD REF]
b quin) Ensure women’s and girls’ unimpeded access to justice and to effective legal assistance so that they can make informed decisions regarding, inter alia, legal proceedings and issues relating to family law and criminal law, and also ensure that they have access to just and effective remedies for the harm that they have suffered, including through the adoption of national legislation where necessary; [AGREED AD REF]
k bis) Take the necessary legislative and/or other measures to prohibit compulsory and forced alternative dispute resolution processes, including forced mediation and conciliation, in relation to all forms of violence against women and girls; [AGREED AD REF]
b bis) Review and where appropriate, revise, amend or abolish all laws, regulations, policies, practices and customs that discriminate against women or have a discriminatory impact on women, and ensure that the provisions of multiple legal systems, where they exist, comply with international human rights obligations, commitments and principles, including the principle of non-discrimination; [AGREED AD REF]
a bis) Mainstream a gender perspective into all legislation, policies and programmes and allocate adequate financial and human resources, including through the expanded use of gender-responsive planning and budgeting, taking into account the needs and circumstances of women and girls, including victims and survivors of violence, for the development, adoption and full implementation of relevant laws, policies and programmes to address discrimination and violence against women and girls and for support to women’s organizations; [AGREED AD REF]
e quat) Increase the investment in gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls, taking into account the diversity of needs and circumstances of women and girls including victims and survivors of violence, including through mainstreaming a gender perspective in resource allocation and ensuring the necessary human, financial and material resources for specific targeted activities to ensure gender equality at the local, national, regional and international levels, as well through enhanced and increased international cooperation; [AGREED AD REF]
c) (reformulated includes c and f): Develop and implement effective multisectoral national policies, strategies and programmes, with the full and effective participation of women and girls, which include measures for prevention, protection and support services and responses; data collection, research, monitoring and evaluation; the establishment of coordination mechanisms; allocation of adequate financial and human resources; independent national monitoring and accountability mechanisms; and clear timelines and national benchmarks for results to be achieved; [AGREED AD REF]
d) reformulated with elements from d ter) and d sept): Ensure that in armed conflict and post-conflict situations the prevention of and response to all forms of violence against women and girls, including sexual and gender-based violence, are prioritized and effectively addressed, including as appropriate through the investigation, prosecution and punishment of perpetrators to end impunity, removal of barriers to women's access to justice, the establishment of complaint and reporting mechanisms, the provision of support to victims and survivors, affordable and accessible health care services, including sexual and reproductive health, and reintegration measures; and take steps to increase women’s participation in conflict resolution and peacebuilding processes and post-conflict decision-making; [AGREED AD REF]
d quat) Ensure accountability for the killing, maiming and targeting of women and girls and crimes of sexual violence, as prohibited under international law, stressing the need for the exclusion of such crimes from amnesty provisions in the context of conflict resolution processes and address such acts in all stages of the armed-conflict and post-conflict resolution process including through transitional justice mechanisms, while taking steps to ensure the full and effective participation of women in such processes;
d quin) End impunity by ensuring accountability and punishing perpetrators of the most serious crimes against women and girls under national and international law, and stressing the need for the alleged perpetrators of those crimes to be held accountable under national justice or, where applicable, international justice;
e bis) Take effective steps to ensure the equal participation of women and men in all spheres of political life, political reform and in all levels of decision-making, in all situations, and to contribute to the prevention and the elimination of discrimination and violence against women and girls; [AGREED AD REF]
d bis) Withdrawn
d oct. Underline commitments to strengthen national efforts, including with the support of international cooperation, aimed at addressing the rights and needs of women and girls affected by natural disasters, armed conflicts, other complex humanitarian emergencies, trafficking in persons and terrorism, within the context of actions geared to addressing and eliminating violence against women and girls and the realization of the internationally agreed goals and commitments related to gender equality and the empowerment of women, including the Millennium Development Goals. Also underline the need to take concerted actions in conformity with international law to remove the obstacles to the full realization of the rights of women and girls living under foreign occupation, so as to ensure the achievement of the above-mentioned goals and commitments. [AGREED AD REF]
New g quat) Ensure that the specific needs of women and girls are incorporated into the planning, delivery and monitoring of, and infrastructure for disaster risk reduction programmes and protocols and humanitarian assistance to address natural disasters, including those induced by climate change such as extreme weather events and slow onset impacts, with their full participation, and that in disaster preparedness efforts and in post-disaster settings, the prevention and response to all forms of violence against women and girls, including sexual violence, are prioritized and adequately addressed; [AGREED AD REF]
new e alt) Address violence against women and girls resulting from transnational organized crime, including trafficking in persons and drug trafficking, and adopt specific policies to prevent and eradicate violence against women in crime prevention strategies. [AGREED AD REF]

new e bis) Strengthen bilateral, regional and international cooperation, by consolidating existing mechanisms and developing new initiatives consistent with the UN Convention on Transnational Organized Crime and its supplementary Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons especially Women and Children and by implementing the United Nations Global Plan of Action to Combat Trafficking in Persons. [AGREED AD REF]

d nov) (includes d nov, d dec, d undec, d dosdec, y quat, and elements of e and e quat, ee and p alt bis) Take appropriate measures to address the root factors, including external factors, that contribute to trafficking in women and girls. Prevent, combat and eliminate trafficking in women and girls by criminalizing all forms of trafficking in persons, in particular for the purpose of sexual and economic exploitation, as well as by strengthening existing civil and criminal legislation with a view to providing better protection of the rights of women and girls and by bringing to justice and punishing the offenders and intermediaries involved, including public officials, by protecting the rights of trafficked persons and preventing revictimization. Take appropriate measures to ensure that identified victims of trafficking in persons are not penalized for having been trafficked. Provide identified victims of trafficking appropriate protection and care, such as rehabilitation and reintegration in society, witness protection, job training, legal assistance, confidential health care, and repatriation with the informed consent of the trafficked person, regardless of their participation in any legal proceeding. Accelerate public awareness, education and training to discourage the demand that fosters all forms of exploitation. [AGREED AD REF]

p alt bis) Withdrawn
d terdec) Withdrawn
new e and h merged. Strengthen international cooperation, including through the fulfilment of international official development assistance commitments, that support multisectoral policies, strategies, programmes and best practices, in accordance with national priorities aimed at achieving sustainable development and the realization of the empowerment of women, particularly towards ending violence against women and girls and promoting gender equality. [AGREED AD REF]
i) Encourage private sector investment in programmes, campaigns and strategies to respond to, prevent and eliminate all forms of discrimination and violence against women and girls, including sexual harassment at the workplace, and to empower victims and survivors of violence; [AGREED AD REF]
j) Adopt and fund policy reforms and programmes, and support education, to sensitize, train and strengthen the capacity of public officials and professionals, including the judiciary, police and military, as well as those working in the areas of education, health, social welfare, justice, defense and immigration; hold public officials accountable for not complying with laws and regulations relating to violence against women and girls, in order to prevent and respond to such violence in a gender-sensitive manner, end impunity, and avoid the abuse of power leading to violence against women and the re-victimization of victims and survivors. [AGREED AD REF]

(end of j, now separate para) Prevent, investigate and punish acts of violence against women and girls that are perpetrated by people in positions of authority, such as teachers, religious leaders, political leaders and law enforcement officials, in order to end impunity for these crimes. [AGREED AD REF]

j bis) Withdrawn

k) Create and enhance a supportive environment for increased consultation and participation among all relevant stakeholders in efforts to address violence against women and girls, especially organizations working at the community level to promote the empowerment of women and girls, as well as victims and survivors so they can become agents of change and their knowledge and experience can contribute to the elaboration of policies and programmes; [AGREED AD REF]

k ter) Support and protect those who are committed to eliminating violence against women, including women human rights defenders in this regard, who face particular risks of violence. [AGREED AD REF]

k sext) Take appropriate measures to ensure the human rights of and protect women and girls deprived of their liberty and/or under State custody or State care from all forms of violence, in particular sexual abuse; [AGREED AD REF]

k sept) Reformulated (k sept, k oct, 14 supra): Adopt a life-cycle approach in efforts to end discrimination and violence against women and girls and ensure that specific issues affecting older women are given greater visibility and attention, are addressed through the fulfillment of obligations under relevant international conventions and agreements and included in national policies and programmes to prevent and eliminate violence against women; [AGREED AD REF]
B. Addressing structural and underlying causes and risk factors so as to prevent violence against women and girls

l) Accelerate efforts to prevent and eliminate all forms of discrimination against women and girls and ensure their equal enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental freedoms, including the right to education and to the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health; and ensure that all children, particularly girls, have equal access to, and complete, free and compulsory primary education of good quality, and renew their efforts to improve and expand girls’ education at all levels, including the secondary and higher levels, in all academic areas; and increase girls’ ability to attend school and extra-curricular activities by investing in public infrastructure projects and accessible quality public services and providing a safe environment; [AGREED AD REF]

y bis Promote women’s full participation in the formal economy, in particular in economic decision-making, and their equal access to full employment and decent work; empower women in the informal sector; and ensure that women and men enjoy equal treatment in the workplace, as well as equal pay for equal work or work of equal value, and equal access to power and decision-making, and promote sharing of paid and unpaid work; [AGREED AD REF]

m) Accelerate efforts to develop, review and strengthen policies, and allocate adequate financial and human resources, to address the structural and underlying causes of violence against women and girls, including gender discrimination, inequality, unequal power relations between women and men, gender stereotypes, poverty as well as their lack of empowerment, in particular in the context of the economic and financial crisis; and accelerate efforts to eradicate poverty and persistent legal, social, and economic inequalities, including by strengthening women’s and girls’ economic participation, empowerment and inclusion, in order to decrease their risk of violence;

New para States are strongly urged to refrain from promulgating and applying any unilateral economic, financial or trade measures not in accordance with international law and the Charter that impede the full achievement of economic and social development, particularly in developing countries;

New disability para: Take all appropriate legislative, administrative, social, educational and other measures to protect and promote the rights of women and girls with disabilities as they are more vulnerable to all forms of exploitation, violence and abuse, including in the workplace, educational institutions, the home, and other settings; [AGREED AD REF]

l bis) Undertake legislative and administrative financial and other measures to give women full and equal access to economic resources, including the right to inheritance and to ownership of land and other property, credit, natural resources and appropriate technologies, inter alia, by means of international cooperation; prioritize and intensify initiatives towards the economic empowerment of women at the grassroot level, including through entrepreneurship education and business incubators, as a way of uplifting their status, thereby reducing their vulnerability to violence. [AGREED AD REF]

m quin Refrain from using social justifications for denying women their freedom of movement, the right to own property and the right to equal protection of the law. [AGREED AD REF]

b quat) Design and implement national policies that aim at transforming those social norms that condone violence against women and girls, and work to counteract attitudes by which women and girls are regarded as subordinate to men and boys or as having stereotyped roles that perpetuate  practices involving violence or coercion; [AGREED AD REF]

t cleaned up para: Develop and implement educational programmes and teaching materials, including comprehensive evidence-based education for human sexuality, based on full and accurate information, for all adolescents and youth, in a manner consistent with their evolving capacities, with the appropriate direction and guidance from parents and legal guardians, with the involvement of children, adolescents, youth and communities, and in coordination with women’s, youth and specialized non-governmental organizations, in order to modify the social and cultural patterns of conduct of men and women of all ages, to eliminate prejudices, and to promote and build informed decision-making, communication and risk reduction skills for the development of respectful relationships and, based on gender equality and human rights, as well as teacher education and training programmes for both formal and non-formal education.

r) Carry out awareness-raising and education campaigns, in co-operation with civil society organizations, especially women's organizations, through different means of communication, targeting the general public, young people, men and boys, to address the structural and underlying causes of violence and abuse against women and girls; to overcome gender stereotypes and promote zero tolerance for such violence, to remove the stigma of being a victim and survivor of violence; and to create an enabling environment where women and girls can easily report incidences of violence and make use of the services available and of protection and assistance programmes; [AGREED AD REF]

q) Mobilize communities and institutions to address and change attitudes, behaviours  and] practices that perpetuate and condone gender stereotypes and all forms of discrimination and violence against women and girls, by engaging with women’s and youth organizations, national machineries for the advancement of women, National Human Rights Institutions where they exist, schools, educational and media institutions and others directly working with women and girls, men and boys and with individuals at all levels of society and in all settings, religious and community leaders and elders, teachers and parents; [AGREED AD REF]


n) merged with o Promote and protect the human rights of all women including their right to have control over and decide freely and responsibly on matters related to their sexuality, including sexual and reproductive health, free of coercion, discrimination and violence; and adopt and accelerate the implementation of laws, policies and programmes which protect and enable the enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental freedoms, including their reproductive rights, in accordance with the Programme of Action of International Conference on Population and Development, the Beijing Platform for Action and their review outcomes.

n bis) deleted

v) Develop and implement gender-sensitive policies, strategies, programmes and measures which promote greater understanding and recognition that caregiving is a critical societal function and encourage the equal sharing of responsibilities and chores between men and women in caregiving, including for persons with disabilities, older persons and people living with HIV, as well as for child-rearing, parenting and domestic work; and also work to change attitudes that reinforce the division of labour based on gender, in order to promote shared family responsibility for work in the home and reduce the domestic work burden for women and girls; [AGREED AD REF]

u) now part of w

w) (combined with w alt) Engage, educate, encourage and support men and boys to take responsibility for their behaviour,  and to ensure that men and adolescent boys take responsibility for their sexual and reproductive behaviour, and to refrain from all forms of discrimination and violence against women and girls; develop, invest in, and implement policies, strategies and programmes, including comprehensive education programmes to increase their understanding of the harmful effects of violence and how it undermines gender equality and human dignity, promote respectful relationships, provide positive role models for gender equality and to encourage men and boys to take an active part and become strategic partners and allies in the prevention and elimination of all forms of discrimination and violence against women and girls;

p alt) Withdrawn

p bis) Review, enact and strictly enforce laws and regulations concerning the minimum legal age of consent and the minimum age for marriage, raising the minimum age for marriage where necessary, and generate social support for the enforcement of these laws in order to end the practice of child, early and forced marriage;

(2nd part of p bis) Ensure the provision of viable alternatives and institutional support, including for girls who are already married and/or pregnant, especially educational opportunities with an emphasis on keeping girls in school through post-primary education and promoting the empowerment of girls through improving educational quality and ensuring safe and hygienic conditions in schools; physical access to education, including by establishing safe residential facilities and childcare, increasing financial incentives to women and their families where necessary; [AGREED AD REF]

(3rd part of p bis) Ensure the access of adolescents to services and programmes on preventing early pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections and HIV, ensuring personal safety, and preventing the use and abuse of alcohol and other harmful substances;
bb bis) Develop policies and programmes, giving priority to formal and informal education programmes that support girls and enable them to acquire knowledge, develop self-esteem and take responsibility for their own lives, including access to a sustainable livelihood; and place special focus on programmes to educate women and men, especially parents and caregivers, on the importance of girls' physical and mental health and well-being, including the elimination of child, early and forced marriage, violence against women and girls, female genital mutilation, child sexual exploitation, including commercial sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, rape, incest and abduction, and the elimination of discrimination against girls such as in food allocation; [AGREED AD REF]

x) Develop and support existing policies and programmes targeting children and young people, especially women, who have experienced or witnessed domestic violence or sexual abuse, including protection for children in the justice system, so as to reduce the risk of their possible re-victimization or perpetration of violence and restore their health; and implement such programmes in a gender-responsive manner with the meaningful participation of young people, civil society and women’s and youth organizations, and educational and health institutions; [AGREED AD REF]

s) Recognize the important role the media can play in the elimination of gender stereotypes, including those perpetuated by commercial advertisements, and in promoting non-discriminatory and gender-sensitive reporting, including by preserving the confidentiality of the identity of victims and survivors where appropriate; and, to the extent consistent with freedom of expression, encourage the media to improve public awareness on violence against women and girls, to train those who work in the media, and to develop and strengthen self-regulatory mechanisms to promote balanced and non-stereotypical portrayals of women with a view to eliminating discrimination against and the exploitation of women and girls and refraining from presenting them as inferior beings and exploiting them as sexual objects and commodities and instead present women and girls as creative human beings, key actors and contributors to and beneficiaries of the process of development; [AGREED AD REF]

s quin) Support the development and use of ICT and social media as a resource for the empowerment of women and girls, including access to information on the prevention of and response to violence against women and girls; and develop mechanisms to combat the use of ICT and social media to perpetrate violence against women and girls, including the criminal misuse of ICT for sexual harassment, sexual exploitation, child pornography and trafficking in women and girls, and emerging forms of violence such as cyber stalking, cyber bullying and privacy violations that compromise women’s and girls’ safety; [AGREED AD REF]

t ter) Reformulated (with t bis, t ter, y quin and ff bis): Improve the safety of girls at and on the way to and from school, including by establishing a safe and violence free environment by improving infrastructure such as transportation, providing separate and adequate sanitation facilities, improved lighting, playgrounds and safe environments; adopting national policies to prohibit, prevent and address  violence against children, especially girls, including sexual harassment, and bullying and other forms of violence, through measures such as conducting violence prevention activities in schools and communities, and establishing and enforcing penalties for violence against girls; [AGREED AD REF]

y) Take measures to ensure that all workplaces are free from discrimination and exploitation, violence, and sexual harassment and bullying, and that they address discrimination and violence against women, and girls, as appropriate, through measures such as regulatory and oversight frameworks and reforms, collective agreements, codes of conduct, including appropriate disciplinary measures, protocols and procedures, referral of cases of violence to health services for treatment and police for investigation; as well as through awareness-raising and capacity-building, in collaboration with employers, unions and workers, including workplace services and flexibility for victims and survivors; [AGREED AD REF]

z) Increase measures to protect women and girls from violence and harassment, including sexual harassment and bullying, in both public and private spaces, to address security and safety, through awareness-raising, involvement of local communities, crime prevention laws, policies, programmes such as the UN Safe Cities initiative, improved urban planning, infrastructures, public transport and street lighting, and also through social and interactive media; [AGREED AD REF]

z bis) Condemn and take action to prevent violence against women and girls in health care settings, including sexual harassment, humiliation and forced medical procedures, or those conducted without informed consent, and which may be irreversible, such as forced hysterectomy, forced caesarean section, forced sterilization, forced abortion, and forced use of contraceptives, especially for particularly vulnerable and disadvantaged women and girls, such as those living with HIV, women and girls with disabilities, indigenous and Afro-descendent women and girls, pregnant adolescents and young mothers, older women, and women and girls from national or ethnic minorities. [AGREED AD REF]

m ter) Further adopt and implement measures to ensure social and legal inclusion and protection of women migrants, including women migrant workers in origin, transit and destination countries, and promote and protect the full realization of their human rights, and their protection against violence and exploitation; implement gender sensitive policies and programmes for women migrant workers and provide safe and legal channels that recognize their skills and education, provide fair labour conditions, and as appropriate facilitate their productive employment and decent work as well as integration into the labour force, and also take measures to ensure the protection of self-employed workers in cross-border work and women seasonal workers from violence and discrimination. [AGREED AD REF]

New para from Qatar - withdrawn
C. Strengthening multisectoral services, programmes and responses to violence against women and girls

aa) Establish comprehensive, coordinated, inter-disciplinary, accessible and sustained multisectoral services, programmes and responses at all levels, and with the support of all available technologies, for all victims and survivors of all forms of violence against women and girls based on their needs, that are adequately resourced and include effective and coordinated action by, as appropriate, police and the justice sector, legal aid services, health-care services, including sexual and reproductive health, and medical, psychological and other counselling services, including specialist services as appropriate, State and independent women’s shelters and counselling centers, 24-hour hotlines, social aid services, one stop crisis centers, immigration services, child services, public housing services to provide low threshold, easy to reach and safe assistance for women and children, as well as assistance, protection and support through access to long term accommodation, educational, employment and economic opportunities, and take steps to ensure the safety and security of health care workers and service providers that assist and support victims and survivors of violence, and in cases of girl child victims, such services and responses must take into account the best interests of the child; [AGREED AD REF]

bb) and cc) merged, Facilitator’s proposal: Further take measures to coordinate services through the establishment of processes for referral between services of victims and survivors while ensuring their confidentiality and safety, establish national benchmarks and timelines, and monitor their progress and implementation; as well as ensure access to coordinated multisectoral services, programmes and responses for all women and girls at risk of or subjected to violence [AGREED AD REF]

cc) Merged with bb

ee) Ensure the availability and accessibility for victims and survivors and their children to services, programmes and opportunities, for their full recovery and reintegration into society, as well as full access to justice, including those subjected to domestic violence and other forms of violence, by putting in place measures, and where these exist, expanding such measures; and ensure the provision of adequate and timely information on available support services and legal measures, when possible in a language that they understand and in which they can communicate; [AGREED AD REF]

g bis) Withdrawn

ff) Deleted

ee quat) Create, develop and implement a set of policies, and support the establishment of rehabilitative services, to encourage and bring changes in the attitudes and behaviours of perpetrators of violence against women and girls, and to reduce the likelihood of reoffending, including in cases of domestic violence, rape and harassment, as well as monitor and assess their impact and effect; [AGREED AD REF]

New dd supra Improve access to timely, affordable and quality health systems for women and girls, including through gender-sensitive national strategies and public-health policies and programmes that are comprehensive, affordable and better targeted to addressing their needs and that encourage women’s active participation in their design and implementation; and also enhance women’s access to affordable, safe, effective and good quality treatment and medicines, with a special emphasis on the poor, vulnerable and marginalized segments of the population [AGREED AD REF]

dd ter) Deleted

dd) Address all health consequences including the physical, mental and sexual and reproductive health consequences, of violence against women and girls by providing accessible health-care services that are responsive to trauma and include affordable, safe, effective and good-quality medicines, first line support, treatment of injuries and psychosocial and mental health support, emergency contraception, safe abortion where such services are permitted by national law, post-exposure prophylaxis for HIV infection, diagnosis and treatment for sexually transmitted infections, training for medical professionals to effectively identify and treat women subjected to violence, as well as forensic examinations by appropriately trained professionals;

w ter) Combined with dd bis Reformulated (w ter and z ter): Accelerate efforts to address the intersection of HIV and AIDS and violence against all women and girls, in particular the common risk factors, including through strategies to address domestic and sexual violence, and to strengthen coordination and integration of policies, programmes and services to address the intersection between HIV and violence against women and girls, and ensure that responses to HIV and AIDS are leveraged to prevent violence against them, while meeting their specific needs for sexual and reproductive health care services, as well as HIV and AIDS diagnosis, affordable and accessible treatment and prevention, including procurement and supply of safe and effective prevention commodities, including male and female condoms;

v (bis) Eliminate discrimination and violence against women and girls living with HIV as well as the caregivers of persons living with HIV and take into account their vulnerability to stigma, discrimination, poverty and marginalisation from their families and communities when implementing programmes and measures which encourage the equal sharing of caring responsibilities; [AGREED AD REF]

ee bis) Reformulated (with ee ter and ff ter): Expand the availability of health-care services, and in particular, strengthen maternal and reproductive health centres, as key entry points that provide support, referrals to services and protection to families, women and girls at risk of violence, especially sexual violence, and which provide support to adolescents in order to avoid early and unintended pregnancies and sexually-transmitted infections, through education, information and access to sexual and reproductive health-care services; [AGREED AD REF]

w bis) African Group withdrawn
D. Improving the evidence-base

gg) Cleaned up para: Carry out continued multidisciplinary research and analysis on the structural and underlying causes of, cost and risk factors for violence against women and girls and its types and prevalence, in order to inform the development and revision of laws and their implementation, policies and strategies, and make such information public to support awareness-raising efforts;

hh) Collect, collate, analyze and disseminate reliable, comparable and anonymized data and statistics on a regular basis, disaggregated by sex and age, at the national and local levels on different forms of discrimination and violence against women and girls, its causes and consequences, including the health costs and economic costs to society of such discrimination and violence, and also consider all other relevant factors, such as accessibility, to inform the formulation, monitoring and evaluation of laws, policies and programmes; [AGREED AD REF]

(2nd part of hh) Improve the collection, harmonization and use of administrative data, including, where appropriate, from the police, health sector and the judiciary, on incidents of violence against women and girls, including data on the relationship between the perpetrator and victim and geographic location, ensuring that confidentiality, ethical and safety considerations are taken into account in the process of data collection, and improving the effectiveness of the services and programmes provided and protecting the safety and security of the victim; [AGREED AD REF]

hh bis) Withdrawn

jj) (reformulated jj and jj alt: Develop national monitoring and evaluation mechanisms to assess policies and programmes, including preventive and response strategies to address violence against women and girls in both public and private spheres; [AGREED AD REF]

New jj bis) Promote the sharing of best practices and experiences, as well as feasible, practical and successful policy and programme interventions; as well as promote application of these successful interventions and experiences in other settings; [AGREED AD REF]
hh ter) Deleted

14. (integrating 12) The Commission emphasizes that ending violence against women and girls is imperative, including for the achievement of the internationally agreed development goals, including the Millennium Development Goals, and must be a priority for the eradication of poverty, the achievement of inclusive sustainable development, peace and security, human rights, health, gender equality and empowerment of women,  sustainable and inclusive economic growth and social cohesion, and vice versa. The Commission strongly recommends that the realization of gender equality and empowerment of women be considered as a priority in the elaboration of the post-2015 development agenda. [AGREED AD REF]

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Oral Statement by NCWC and CFUW delivered March 14


United Nations Commission on the Status of Women – 57th session 852/ 784 735
Oral Statement, March 14, 2013

Read by Linda MacDonald on behalf of the
Canadian Federation of University Women (CFUW) and National Council of Women Canada (NCWC)

Thank you for this opportunity to appear before you.  Many member states have reported progress in their efforts to end violence against women and girls, including a good number that have developed national action plans or strategies. However, many of these plans and strategies are not comprehensive or coordinated and are lacking sufficient human and financial resources to ensure their success. Still, there are several Member States who have yet to develop comprehensive and holistic national action plans, including our own country, Canada.

It is clear from what we have heard during this session, that much more must be done in all Member States to strengthen and enforce legal frameworks, improve access to justice, expand the collection of sex-disaggregated data, and most importantly enhance prevention efforts by addressing poverty, gender discrimination and inequality,
Therefore, we wish to express our support for the recommendations presented in the Secretary-General’s reports on The Prevention of Violence against Women and Girls and Multisectoral Services and Responses for Women and Girls Subjected to Violence. In particular, we wish to join in calling on all Member States to adopt and implement coordinated, comprehensive, and adequately resourced, multi-sectoral national action plans as means of preventing and responding to the continuum of violence against women and girls. In addition to the recommendations found in the Secretary General’s reports, we urge member states to include:

Distinct strategies to prevent and respond to all forms of violence, including torture by non-state actors and enforced prostitution, which are not specifically mentioned in the Secretary General’s reports;
Access to mental health programming and services for survivors and perpetrators of violence;
Access to safe, accessible and affordable housing to ensure that women and girls are better able to avoid and escape violent living situations;
Among the strategies to prevent and address violence against women in disproportionately affected communities, include women/persons who are lesbian, bisexual, transgendered, transsexual and/or queer. The Secretary General’s reports do not specifically mention this community.
Ratification and implementation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), as part of the strategies to end violence against Indigenous women. In Canada, a disproportionate number of Indigenous women and girls have suffered violence, gone missing, or been murdered over the past three decades. Much of this violence is a reflection of the underlying conditions of poverty, racism and colonial history; the full implementation of the UNDRIP is an integral part of the solution.

Finally, we further urge Member States to:

Make the elimination of violence against women a priority for  international development programming and assistance, including contributing to the UN Trust Fund in Support of Actions to Eliminate Violence against Women; and
Implement and provide action plans for UN Security Council Resolution 1325 and related resolutions on women, peace and security in conflict-affected settings.

In closing we commend Secretary-General, Ban Ki-Moon for bringing together governments, the UN system and key stakeholders to address violence against women and girls through the UNiTE to End Violence against Women campaign. The launch of the Secretary-General’s 2009 database on violence against women has helped Member States and civil society advocates to share information, assess and respond to the global epidemic of violence against women and girls. We urge the United Nations will continue to play a leadership role through this important campaign and other initiatives beyond 2015.


Message from the International Campaign to Stop Rape and Gender Violence in Conflict

Uphold Women’s Rights at the 57th Commission on the Status of 
Women

Dear Delegate,

We, the International Campaign to Stop Rape & Gender Violence in 
Conflict, call on you as a member state taking part in the 57th 
United Nations Commission on the Status of Women, to uphold 
international obligations towards women’s rights and conclude the 
session with a strong communiqué that will pave the way for 
accelerated action to end gender violence.

Members from the International Campaign to Stop Rape & Gender 
Violence in Conflict, including Nobel Peace Laureate and Campaign Co- Chair Jody Williams, joined allies in New York last week to call on 
member states for strong action to stop rape in conflict.
As negotiations towards a final outcome enter the second and final 
week, we are alarmed that a number of states are using the 
Commission to reverse hard-won progress the global community has 
made in the past couple of decades to eliminate violence against 
women.

At a very minimum, the Commission on the Status of Women must uphold 
the universally agreed-upon language on women’s rights including 
CEDAW, the General Assembly’s Declaration on the Elimination of 
Violence Against Women (1993), the Beijing Platform for Action 
(1995), and UN Security Council Resolution 1325 (2000).

The Campaign is deeply concerned about efforts to remove reference 
to language specific to these international agreements on women’s 
rights from the Commission’s final documents. In particular, certain 
states adamantly claim that religious or cultural traditions should 
take precedent over ending violence against women. As an 
international Campaign with members in more than 125 countries, we 
stress that religion or culture must never be used as an excuse to 
perpetuate gender violence.

Furthermore, we are concerned that some states are again making 
sexual and reproductive rights a point of contention, and equally 
disturbing, are objecting to language that will define rape to 
include forced sexual acts with a partner.

Gender violence is a global epidemic, ranging from domestic violence 
to systematic rape in conflict. To end a UN Commission intended to 
address gaps in current responses to gender violence with weakened 
global cooperation to end violence against women, sends a message to 
perpetrators that they can continue their crimes with impunity. 
Survivors deserve more from the international community.

It is imperative that the international community reaffirm its 
commitment to women’s rights. We remind you that current discussion 
of new targets for when the Millennium Development Goals expire in 
2015 is ongoing, and the statement from the Commission will impact 
this process.
We urgently call on member states of the Commission to show strong 
leadership to prevent violence against women and rape in conflict, 
to protect women and girls from violence, including through 
provision of needed psychosocial and medical services, and to 
provide survivors with access to comprehensive justice mechanisms 
including prosecution of perpetrators.

In order to advance both national and international justice 
mechanisms to address serious crimes of gender violence, we call on 
you to support the adoption of an amendment proposed by 
Liechtenstein that would further justice for survivors by supporting 
the complementary and necessary work of the International Criminal 
Court.

As thousands of women and survivors of gender violence have gathered 
in New York for this historic moment as the United Nations 
prioritizes ending violence against women, and millions more around 
the globe watch intently, we hope you will listen to our collective 
call for action and emerge with a final statement that provides a 
clear path of action to end the epidemic.

Sincerely,
Jody Williams
Nobel Peace Prize, 1997
Co-Chair, International Campaign to Stop Rape & Gender Violence in 
Conflict
Chair, Nobel Women’s Initiative

Autonomous Women's Center, Serbia
Association for Women’s Rights in Development
Catholics for Choice
Fonds pour les Femmes Congolaises, Democratic Republic of Congo
Global Fund for Women, United States
Human Rights Watch, United States
Infoteka, Bosnia & Herzegovina
JASS Just Associates
Liga de Mujeres Desplazadas, Colombia
Observatorio Genero Democracia y Derechos Humanos, Colombia
Physicians for Human Rights, United States
Solidarité Féminine pour la Paix et le Développement Intégral, 
Democratic Republic of Congo
Sonke Gender Justice, South Africa
V-Day
Women's League of Burma
Women’s League for Peace and Freedom
Women’s Media Center’s Women Under Siege Project
Women's Network Croatia
World Pulse