Areas of Focus
Areas of Focus
GWI’s advocacy focus 2016-2019
Education is a cross-cutting issue that can apply to many areas. GWI’s advocacy priorities reflect the need for action in many areas that touch girls’ and women’s lives, with a view to providing access to higher and continuing education and human rights education throughout. GWI’s advocacy programmes encompasses the following resolutions that were passed by the 32nd GWI General Assembly in Cape Town in 2016.
Bullying and Cyberbullying in Schools
Raise public awareness on the detrimental effect of bullying and cyberbullying, uphold the legal remedies already in place and advocate for such policies where there are none. Advocate for educational institutions to establish or develop programmes which train educators and counsellors to recognize bullying and cyberbullying and address the issue by integrating appropriate training into their core curriculum and ongoing professional development. Encourage institutions to provide educational programmes for parents and guardians to recognize, understand, support and teach anti-bullying strategies.
Full Accessibility and Barrier-Free Environments for Persons with Disabilities
Urge governments to meet the commitments made by signatories to the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). Encourage the establishment, implementation and monitoring of national standards to promote and protect the full enjoyment of human rights by persons with disabilities, in particular their right to education. Urge governments to adopt and enforce regulations to enable all persons with disabilities to participate in society to the fullest possible extent and enjoy full equality under the law.
Raise women’s awareness concerning possible problems of polygamy. Make the case of polygamy public to educate families, both women and men, about the possible consequences of polygamy in order to protect the human rights of women and girls. Seek strong support from governments and the judiciary, including appropriate legislation and publicity of positive judicial sentences, to increase awareness of polygamy and its consequent effect. Utilize the GWI consultative role with ECOSOC, UNICEF, UNFPA and other international bodies to assist in the implementation of this resolution.
Sexual Harassment of Women and Girls in Public Spaces
Raise global awareness of the issue of public sexual harassment of women and girls as a violation of their human and civil rights. Urge governments to address the issue and develop both legislation and educational programmes for the elimination of all forms of public sexual harassment and to encourage full respect for women and girls. Support the expansion of UN Women’s Safe Cities Global Initiative launched in 2010 to encourage innovative, locally owned and sustainable approaches to prevent and respond to sexual harassment and other forms of violence against women and girls in public spaces.
Tolerance of Minority Groups
Urge governments to enact laws protecting minority groups against intolerance and enabling them to enjoy their rights respectfully. Encourage the implementation of laws that provide punishment for acts of intolerance to minority groups.
Preventing Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)
Urge governments to pass laws forbidding all forms of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM). Encourage the enactment of legislations making FGM illegal with the effect that anyone found involved in aiding, abetting, perpetrating this practice will be punished in a court of law.
Advocate for the review and implementation of existing national legislations on human trafficking. Urge governments to enact further legislation in defense of human rights, specifically in regard to the human trafficking of women and children, whether this is for purposes of sexual exploitation or other forms of exploitation as defined in the UN Protocol to prevent, suppress and punish trafficking in persons. Use the GWI international network of graduate women to discuss the issue and introduce further actions that will help to raise awareness of the issue. Use the GWI standing committees and its consultative status at the United Nations to urge International Organisations and National Members to consider this resolution to eradicate human trafficking especially in regard to women and children. Organise talks, discussions and workshops pertaining to the trafficking of women and girls and formulate suggestions as to how to eradicate the problem.
Promote international agreements to forbid child marriages and raise awareness of girls’ rights to education and a better future. Urge governments to implement legislation and practices to prevent child marriages and provide opportunities for all children, especially girls, to complete secondary education. Encourage the promotion of early education in human rights with a gender perspective. Call on international organisations and national members to consider this resolution to eradicate child marriages. Advocate for the implementation of social programmes to raise awareness in communities against child marriage and raise awareness of girls’ rights to education and a better future.
Use of Carbon Taxes to Reduce Climate Change
Call on national governments to adopt carbon taxes as the centre of a robust climate action plan and support the adoption of carbon taxes and other carbon reduction strategies around the world.
Establish a permanent structure within the framework of GWI to increase the involvement of Young Members and help to bridge the significant gap between the generations within GWI. Help create leadership positions and opportunities for young members.