CSW 57 Blog

Live reports from Erica Higbie who is attending the UN Commission on the Status of Women at the UN in New York.

Read Final Report on CSW 57 from UN Rep Erica Higbie.

57th UN CSW day 10

On the last day of CSW57, four female United States judges presented their perspectives on domestic violence, which they defined as; violence directed against women by their intimate partners is an epidemic of global proportions that has devastating physical, emotional, financial and social effects.

Efforts to combat domestic violence are now moving toward recognition of it as a violation of women’s human rights; considered by some to be a form of torture.

Access to justice varies from country to country. Restraining orders are a common form of protection, and are often issued for: threats of assault, abuse, bodily harm, fear…

57th UN CSW day 8

Now well into the second week of CSW57, some overarching messages are becoming loud and clear.

The loudest and clearest of all is that violence against women and girls is preventable, but the approach needs to be right and appropriately adapted to the local circumstances.

What’s working:

  • Community initiated change with strong support for local activists
  • Focusing on the benefits of change: health, safety, good relationships, financial incentives
  • Non-judgmental reflection on male behavior
  • Talking about power concepts(instead of directly addressing violence) with men and boys
  • Educating and empowering women and girls

What’s not:

  • External NGO lead programs
  • Over emphasis on…

57th UN CSW day 6

Happy International Women’s Day from CSW57!

Ban Ki-moon’s message today at the United Nations in New York was that violence against women is not inevitable; that we must struggle against it and win. Michelle Bachelet, Executive Director of UNWomen, also had encouraging words to say at this commemoration for International Women’s Day.

57th UN CSW day 9

The Ambassador from Iraq, Dr Hamid Al-Byati, addressed asession on the influence of faith in the elimination of violence against women today at the CSW. The following are some excerpts from his presentation:

“We, of the Abrahamic religions (Jews, Christians and Muslims), are all one family in our faith. As brothers and sisters in this family, we must treat each other well….The biggest heart in the whole world is the heart of a mother…..

Mistreating any woman is a shame on men and it cannot be tolerated….We must work together to end all forms of violence against women….…

57th UN CSW day 7

Today in a session organized by the Doha International Institute, “Arab Spring: a chance for women’s rights”, four Arab women discussed their perception of violence since the uprisings in 2011. There was general agreement that the violence that is going on now, against men and women, is a systemic form of violence; largely perpetrated by the police or military. Female activists and reporters are particularly at risk. Rape and torture are being used regularly in Egypt, Bahrain and Tunisia.

The speakers also made the following observations about the West’s incorrect assumptionsregarding these developments:

  • The issues for Arab women vary by…

57th UN CSW Day 5

A new and innovative campaign to address violence was announced today at CSW57. The Girl Scouts and Girl Guides are teaming up with UNWomen to start a “Voices against Violence” non-formal education program that is expected to reach 5 million children and young people in over 100 countries.

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