Anglican voices at UN Commission on the Status of Women

[Anglican Communion News Service] When the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women convenes in New York next month to explore women’s empowerment and the link to sustainable development it will benefit from the experience and knowledge of some 22 Anglican women from 18 provinces.

The 60th meeting of the U.N. Commission on the Status of Women (UNCSW) will take place at the U.N.’s headquarters from March 14-24. Since its inception in 1947, it has been at the forefront of developing international conventions on a range of issues, including the political rights of women, women’s rights in marriage – such as consent, minimum age and registration – and equal pay.

Since 1960, evidence began to accumulate that women were disproportionately affected by poverty so UNCSW geared its work towards women’s needs in community and rural development, agricultural work, family planning, and scientific and technological advances.

It is a theme that it returns to for its main discussion next month as it explores women’s empowerment and the link to sustainable development. The commission will also review progress since its 57th session in 2013 on the elimination and prevention of all forms of violence against women and girls, and also a third strand on an emerging theme yet to be decided.

“The session will provide Anglican delegates with a platform on which to spread awareness of the challenges faced by women and girls in their home countries and to advocate on their behalf,” said Rachel Chardon, the general program and administrative officer of the Anglican Communion Office at the United Nations.

“The delegates will also have the opportunity to network, share, and build their own capacity by attending side events planned by non-governmental and faith-based organizations advocating for gender justice within a wide range of developmental and human rights issues,” she said. “We hope they will leave the session having formed a close and empowering network with a global reach. Furthermore, we hope the delegates will communicate with others about their experience and continue to engage with the issues addressed at CSW60 within their sending church and in their local communities.”

The primates of the Anglican Communion and secretary general Archbishop Josiah Idowu-Fearon nominated the 22 Anglican delegates for the CSW60 meeting. They are from Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia, Australia, Brazil, Burundi, Central Africa, England, Hong Kong, Japan, Kenya, Korea, Nigeria, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Scotland, Southern Africa, Sri Lanka, United States, and West Africa.

They will be supported by the staff and volunteers of the Anglican Communion Office at the United Nations.

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