As an active member of the community of UN NGO stakeholders, FAWCO joins with partner organizations in advocacy work through statements, position papers and letters to UN agencies and commissions, including the Commission on the Status of Women. 

CSW, Gender Equality and Women's Rights

CSW 61 (2017)

In October 2016, FAWCO joined other member organizations of the NGO Committee on the Status of Women Vienna in signing two statements that were submitted to UN Women for the 61st session of the Commission on the Status of Women: a Written Statement on women's economic empowerment and an Oral Statement on gender balance in climate policies. 

CSW 60 (2016)

FAWCO joined members of the NGO Committee on the Status of Women in Vienna in a Written Statement and an Oral Statement submitted to the 60th UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) in 2016.

CSW 59 (2015)

FAWCO supported a Written Statement and an Oral Statement on Beijing + 20 that were presented to CSW 59  by members of the NGO Committee on the Status of Women in Vienna.

Other Women's Rights and Gender Equality Advocacy Statements

In May 2017, FAWCO joined a diverse group of NGOs in a welcome letter to Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the new Director-General of the World Health Organization, calling on him to "fully support, pursue, and defend a comprehensive approach to women’s health, accounting for the full spectrum of women and girls’ sexual and reproductive health issues, needs, and rights." 

FAWCO signed a Statement on Women's Rights and Non-State Terror that was presented to the UN by a group of NGOs led by Zonta International.

FAWCO signed a statement of support for continued funding of Planned Parenthood in the US. The letter was drafted by The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, signed by 95 civil and human rights organizations, and sent to the US Senate.


In June 2017, FAWCO joined the NGO Committee on Migration and OMEP in sponsoring a postion paper "An Overlooked Emergency: The Poverty of Forced Migrant Children." The paper was submitted to the UNHCR NGO Briefings in Geneva.

FAWCO joined other signatories of a letter from members of the NGO Committee on Migration regarding the US White House Executive Order banning entry into the US to citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries (aka the "Muslim Ban").

In December 2016, FAWCO together with the NGO Committee on Migration and the World Organization for Early Childhood Education (OMEP) co-sponsored a paper on Migrant and Refugee Children as Protagonists of Development and Peace; the paper was presented at the Global Forum on Migration and Development in Dhaka, Bangladesh.

In April 2016, FAWCO signed on to a Response to the Report of the UN Secretary-General for the World Humanitarian Summit by the NGO Committee on Migration.

In 2015, FAWCO signed two Statements by the NGO Committee on Migration: Providing Education and Care for Syria’s Littlest Refugees and preventing deaths in the Mediterranean Sea.

Civil Society Space at the UN

In May 2016, FAWCO joined more than 230 NGOs in signing a letter to ECOSOC Member States, copied to the presidents of the UN General Assembly and the Human Rights Council and the UN Secretary-General, raising concerns about the use of ECOSOC procedural tactics intended to restrict NGO participation in the UN. The letter, originally drafted by the International Service for Human Rights (ISHR), was timed to coincide with the second 2016 session of the ECOSOC Committee on NGOs at the UN Headquarters in New York, May-June 2016.

Supporting US Funding for the UN 

At FAWCO's 2017 International Conference in Mumbai, the delegates unanimously approved a resoultion in suport of continued US funding for the United Nations and participation in the UN Human Rights Council. The Resolution stated:  We members of FAWCO, an international women's non-governmental organization with special consultative status to the United Nations Economic and Social Council, oppose reductions in US funding for the United Nations, and call upon Congress to ensure active US engagement on the United Nations Human Rights Council.   FAWCO representatives were prepared with a postion paper and talking points on these issues at Overseas Americans Week in Washington DC in April 2017.

Useful information and resources for UN advocacy is available on the website of the United Nations Association of the United States.  


16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence

The 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence begins each year on November 25 - the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, and ends on December 10 - Human Rights Day.

FAWCO's Human Rights Task Force promotes Member Club participation in the 16 Days campaign and offers ideas for how you can get involved in its Bulletins; see an example from 2015. You can also learn more about the 16 Days campaign on the UN Women Website.

Campaign for a Woman UN Secretary-General

FAWCO supported the Campaign for a Woman UN Secretary General. At the FAWCO Interim Meeting in March 2016 in Frankfurt, Germany, over 60 FAWCO women signed a petition calling for the next UN SG to be a woman. We passed the petitions on to the Campaign's Chair to demonstrate our commitment to this important cause. Read more about it in Erica Higbie's article The Ultimate in Political Empowerment for Women.

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