Women Gear Up for Generation Equality Forum

By Kamau Maichuhie

UN Women has organised an international conference dubbed Generation Equality Campaign to be held in June. The meet is co-hosted by France and Mexico in partnership with civil society.

The campaign calls for equal pay, equal sharing of unpaid care and domestic work, an end to sexual harassment and all forms of violence against women and girls. It also pushes for the provision of healthcare services that respond to women’s needs and their equal participation in political life and decision-making in all areas of life.

The campaign also aims at assessing progress made and set out a pathway of measures to achieve gender equality before 2030, as part of an intergenerational campaign called “Generation Equality: realising women’s rights and equal future.”

This year’s forum comes 26 years since the Beijing Platform for Action set out how to remove the systemic barriers that hold women back from equal participation in all areas of life, whether in public or in private.

Public Service and Gender Cabinet Secretary Prof Margaret Kobia, last month chaired an inaugural Generation Equality forum and the National Advisory Committee meeting to deliberate on the action plan to eliminate all forms of gender-based violence including Female Genital Mutilation (FGM).

The meeting also discussed the Generation Equality forum and its importance in driving the agenda for transformative change.

Empowerment of women

“I commend the Mexican and French governments together with UN Women for initiating the Generation Equality Forum given the importance of the initiative that seeks to accelerate the achievement of gender equality and empowerment of women and girls, as envisioned in the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action,” said Prof Kobia.

UN Secretary-General Mr Antonio Guterres in his message during celebrations to mark this year’s International Women’s Day, said women have an equal right to speak with authority on the decisions that affect their lives.

“We must put in place laws and policies to support women in leadership, including special measures and quotas with ambitious targets, and do far more to appoint women to high-level positions. We must tackle violence against women both online and offline so that women’s voices are no longer silenced, especially in public life,” he said.

The UN boss added countries must increase access to financing for women candidates, women’s organisations and feminist movements.

UN Women Executive Director, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka said lessons learnt in the last 26 years have shown what is needed to accelerate action for equality.

“Generation Equality is one of our answers and together, we are that generation,” she said.

There has been significant progress on women’s rights since the adoption of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action 26 years ago, with greater public support and momentum for the gender equality agenda today.

Progress has, however, been slow and to date, no country can claim to have achieved gender equality.

The 2020 World Economic Forum Gender Gap Report shows that while progress is being made on gender equality in political leadership positions, women’s participation in the labour market is stalling and financial disparities are slightly larger.

Images : Google

Source: Daily Nation

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