“Women are still deprived of their human rights in so many places: denied an education, safe childbirth, a life free of violence. SI continues to fight for human rights for all at grassroots, national and international level, representing the voices of women at the UN and more. We are stronger if we work together.” SI President Alice Wells, Human Rights Day 2012.
Violence Against Women & Girls – Commission on the Status of Women
SI hosted two parallel events at the 57th session of the Commission on the Status of Women, showcasing projects around the world and drawing attention to issues identified as priorities by Soroptimists worldwide. Read more in the special section on CSW.
Women and Food Security – UN Food & Agriculture Organisation
At the 39th Session of the Committee on Food Security in Rome, SI Programme Director Hilary Ratcliffe spoke at a High Level Plenary meeting about SI’s work with regards to sustainable development, encouraging governments to pay due attention to the education and empowerment of women and girls. She emphasised that the answer to food security for women must be to build their capacity.
Hilary urged the CFS to prioritise the education and empowerment of women, demonstrating how Soroptimist projects - Milk Fish marketing in the Philippines; Fair Trade Production in the Caribbean; Tree planting with grants for solar lanterns in Kenya – empower women, enabling them to become more food secure and to cope more effectively with climate change. Jose Graziano da Silva, Director-General of the FAO declared that the
“FAO recognises that the empowerment of rural women is essential…I can only imagine what women can do for themselves, their families and their communities when they are empowered; taking into consideration what they already managing to achieve”.
Femicide, Human Trafficking & Environmental Crime – UN Commission on Crime Prevention & Criminal Justice
Femicide (gender-related killing), human trafficking and environmental crime were high on the agenda at the 22nd Session of the UN Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, 22-26 April 2013. SI’s UN representatives in Vienna, Roswitha Benesch, Dora Vrdlovec and Martina Gredler, were joined at the Commission by President-Elect Ann Garvie.
SI’s UN Representatives were involved in organising a side-event on Criminal Waste, the Cost to Women during the Commission. The event looked at the issues of environmental crime and land grabbing, exemplified by gold mining in Ghana where local people, particularly women, have been endangered and sustainable development jeopardized.
The CCPCJ, organised by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), is the central body within the UN system dealing with crime prevention and criminal justice policy. In addition to the resolutions passed during the session, over 30 side events were held, and a record 900 participants from Member States, civil society and the media attended.