This group concentrates on SDG 5 which aims to ‘Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls.’
There are 6 targets with 3 sub targets. https://www.globalgoals.org/5-gender-equality
All other SDGs contain areas where gender equality needs to be taken into account and therefore cross referencing should recognize that the work is much broader.
UN Commission on the Status of Women
“The Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) first met at Lake Success, New York, in February 1947, soon after the founding of the United Nations. All 15 government representatives were women. From its inception, the Commission was supported by a unit of the United Nations that later became the Division for the Advancement of Women (DAW) in the UN Secretariat. The CSW forged a close relationship with non-governmental organizations, with those in consultative status with the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) invited to participate as observers.”
For more detail on the history of the CSW see http://www.unwomen.org/en/csw/brief-history
The Commission meets annually in March in New York. NGOs are invited to submit written statements on the main theme which changes each year.
Currently, the Commission is made up of 45 representative member states who work in regional blocs. So for example in the negotiation process the United States of America is part of a grouping described as Western Europe and Other States. Many of the sessions after the first week are closed sessions as negotiations on Agreed Conclusions take place. NGO’s may be invited to make Oral Statements on the main theme or review theme, but this will be restricted on a time basis. Resolutions of urgency may be introduced by Member States for debate. Often these do reach the point of voting. UN Women now acts as the Secretariat for the Commission, with the UN Secretary General providing a report on the global state of affairs on the main theme.
Our aim is to hold a pre CSW meeting on the theme for the year, to encourage interns to attend CSW and to have a post CSW event.
The Committee on the Elimination of Violence Against Women and Girls
The Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), is an international human rights convention for the promotion of women. The Convention was drafted by the Commission on the Status of Women, a United Nations body, and women’s rights activists and NGOs, and was formally adopted in 1979. The Convention draws together in a binding treaty many aspects of women’s rights legislation, offering practical commitments and unequivocal targets.
The Committee meets regularly throughout the year in Geneva reviewing the record of the national Governments in relation to their work and implementation of the Convention.
The UK Government submits a report and NGOs are encouraged to present a shadow report. Each devolved nation has a representative organisation which contributes to this report; in Scotland it is Engender. https://www.engender.org.uk/
A working partnership has been formed with Soroptimist International Scotland South (https://sigbi.org/scotland-south/) to promote action on various issues. They have worked to hold pre- and post CSW events, and held an event on mental health in 2019.
Soroptimist International has branches across Scotland and is represented in 190+ countries throughout the world. It works to advance the human rights and the status of women and girls.
If you are interested in working on any of these areas or other areas of gender equality please get in touch with Pat Black.