The United Nations General Assembly voted unanimously in July to create a new entity to accelerate progress in meeting the needs of women and girls worldwide. UN Women is a result of years of negotiations between UN Member States and advocacy by the global womens movement.
I am grateful to Member States for having taken this major step forward for the worlds women and girls, said Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon when the decision was made. UN Women will significantly boost UN efforts to promote gender equality, expand opportunity, and tackle discrimination around the globe.
Over many decades, the UN has made significant progress in advancing gender equality, including through landmark agreements such as the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action and the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women.
However gender inequalities remain deeply entrenched in every society. Women in all parts of the world suffer violence and discrimination, and are under-represented in decision-making processes. High rates of maternal mortality continue to be a cause for global shame. For many years, the UN has faced serious challenges in its efforts to promote gender equality globally, including inadequate funding and no single recognized driver to direct UN activities on gender equality issues.
UN Women will give women and girls the strong, unified voice they deserve on the world stage. I look forward to seeing this new entity up and running so that we women and men can move forward together in our endeavour to achieve the goals of equality, development and peace for all women and girls, everywhere, said Deputy Secretary-General Asha-Rose Migiro.
The UN Women Executive Director Michelle Bachelet said the campaign to end violence against women had given new impetus to efforts to end violence against women. The African unite campaign was launched at the Africa Union summit in January this year. Officially called UNiTE to End Violence against Women the campaign consists of five main objectives that will hopefully be achieved in all countries by 2015. More than 130 countries worldwide now have laws against domestic violence, but more needed to be done to enforce them and counter impunity.
More men and mens organisations are joining in the campaign to end violence against women and girls, but we need to combat attitudes and behaviours that permit or even encourage this violence. We need services so that the millions of women and girls who survive abuse every year can recover and secure justice. We must hold perpetrators to account. We must intensify prevention efforts, she said.Post published in: News