Research Associate Barbara Summers represented I2UD this past week at the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW). The CSW is a functional commission of the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) dedicated to the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women. The 59th session of the CSW took place at the United Nations Headquarters in New York from March 9th-20th. The session included representatives of Member States, UN entities, and ECOSOC-accredited NGOs, including I2UD.
The purpose of the annual two week session is to evaluate progress on gender equality, identify challenges, set global standards, and formulate concrete policies to promote gender equality and advancement of women worldwide. The main focus of this session was to discuss progress and gaps in the implementation of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, the key global policy document on gender equality, which was adopted at the Fourth World Conference on Women in 1995.
Some of the highlights of the talks and panels included discussions on mainstreaming people centered and gender sensitive policies, the importance of civil society organizations in achieving greater gender equality worldwide, the increasing impact of climate change on women and children, and the role of family in forming early gender values. Policy gaps discussed included the need for sex-disaggregated data, the need for regionally and contextually specific indicators, the difficulty in reaching vulnerable populations, and a greater focus on financing and implementing a gender sensitive development agenda. Check out the CSW59 website to find out more about the outcomes of the session.