In July 2010, the United Nations General Assembly created UN Women, the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women.
The creation of UN Women came about as part of the UN reform agenda, bringing together resources and mandates for greater impact. It merges and builds on the important work of four previously distinct parts of the UN system, which focused exclusively on gender equality and women’s empowerment:
*Division for the Advancement of Women (DAW)
*International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of Women (INSTRAW)
*Office of the Special Adviser on Gender Issues and Advancement of Women (OSAGI)
*United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM)
The main roles of UN Women are:
*To support inter-governmental bodies, such as the Commission on the Status of Women, in their formulation of policies, global standards and norms.
*To help Member States to implement these standards, standing ready to provide suitable technical and financial support to those countries that request it, and to forge effective partnerships with civil society.
*To hold the UN system accountable for its own commitments on gender equality, including regular monitoring of system-wide progress.
Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW); Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action; UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security (2000) and four subsequently adopted resolutions on women, peace and security: 1820 (2008), 1888 (2009), 1889 (2009), and 1960 (2010); Millenium Declaration and Millenium Development Goals (MDGs).
UN Women is the UN organization dedicated to gender equality and the empowerment of women. A global champion for women and girls, UN Women was established to accelerate progress on meeting their needs worldwide.
UN Women supports UN Member States as they set global standards for achieving gender equality, and works with governments and civil society to design laws, policies, programmes and services needed to implement these standards. It stands behind women’s equal participation in all aspects of life, focusing on five priority areas: increasing women’s leadership and participation; ending violence against women; engaging women in all aspects of peace and security processes; enhancing women’s economic empowerment; and making gender equality central to national development planning and budgeting. UN Women also coordinates and promotes the UN system’s work in advancing gender equality.
Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting and Violence against Women and Girls: Strengthening the Policy Linkages between Different Forms of Violence (2017)
UN Women Annual Report (2015-2016)
A Framework to Underpin Action to Prevent Violence against Women (2015)https://www2.unwomen.org/~/media/headquarters/attachments/sections/library/publications/2015/prevention_framework_unwomen_nov2015.pdf?v=1&d=20151124T225223
Essential Services Package for Women and Girls Subject to Violence (2015)https://www.unwomen.org/en/digital-library/publications/2015/12/essential-services-package-for-women-and-girls-subject-to-violence
Handbook for National Action Plans on Violence Against Women (2011)
Supplement to the Handbook for Legislation on Violence Against Women: “Harmful Practices” Against Women (2011)
UN Women is working with UNDP in the finalization of a policy and programming guidance for prevention of violence against women in elections (VAWE). The guidance aims to fill gaps in current knowledge by providing an overview of the specific forms View More
UN Women is working with UNDP in the finalization of a policy and programming guidance for prevention of violence against women in elections (VAWE). The guidance aims to fill gaps in current knowledge by providing an overview of the specific forms of VAWE, including scope, types, victims and perpetrators, and the range of actions that can be taken at each phase of the electoral cycle to prevent and mitigate it. The Guide is targeted at the key stakeholders and actors who are positioned to act to prevent and mitigate VAWE, and to international organizations and those providing programming support on electoral assistance, women’s political participation and ending violence against women. It is also targeted at members of political parties, particularly the leadership of those parties, civil society organizations (CSOs), women’s groups and gender equality activists.Hide
UN Women supported the office of the UN Secretary General in drafting three Secretary General’s reports on " Intensifying global efforts for the elimination of female genital mutilations", "Intensification of efforts to eliminate all forms View More
UN Women supported the office of the UN Secretary General in drafting three Secretary General’s reports on " Intensifying global efforts for the elimination of female genital mutilations", "Intensification of efforts to eliminate all forms of violence against women and girls" and "Trafficking in women and girls”. These reports were presented to the Third Committee of the UN General Assembly and have served as a basis for the negotiations of new resolutions on these subjects, which were approved at its 71st Session.Hide
As part of UN Women’s collaboration with Phase II of the UNFPA-UNICEF Joint Programme on FGM/C, to strengthen the inter-linkages between VAWG and harmful practices such as FGM/C, and address the root causes of such form of violence, UN Women View More
As part of UN Women’s collaboration with Phase II of the UNFPA-UNICEF Joint Programme on FGM/C, to strengthen the inter-linkages between VAWG and harmful practices such as FGM/C, and address the root causes of such form of violence, UN Women has finalized and published the policy paper titled “Female genital mutilation/cutting and violence against women and girls: Strengthening the policy linkages between different forms of violence”, with the support of a technical advisory group in February 2017. The paper – which is accompanied by an also published background paper - explores policy and programming interlinkages and considers entry points in the areas of (i) national legislation, (ii) prevention strategies, (iii) response for survivors, and (iv) data and evidence, for increased coordination and collaboration to advance the objectives of ending FGM/C and other forms of VAWG, in particular intimate partner violence and non-partner sexual violence. It is intended for multiple audiences, including those directly involved in policy development, planning and implementing initiatives, those providing technical support, and advocates for ending all forms of VAWG, including FGM/C. A training module on gender and FGM/C, to accompany the UNFPA-UNICEF Manual on Social Norms and Change will be finished in March 2017.Hide
DAW, now part of UN Women, prepared reports of the Secretary-General to the sixty-second session of the General Assembly on intensification of efforts to eliminate all forms of violence against women (A/62/201) and violence against women migrant workers (A/62/177); as well as reports of the Secretary-General to the fifty-second session of the Commission on the Status of Women on ending female genital mutilation (E/CN.6/2008/3) and forced marriage of the girl child (E/CN.6/2008/4). In follow–up to General Assembly resolution 61/143, DAW, in collaboration with the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UN ECE) and the United Nations Statistics Division, organized an expert group meeting on “Indicators to measure violence against women”, Geneva, Switzerland, October 2007. DAW and UNSD are supporting a joint dialogue of the Commission on the Status of Women and the Statistical Commission, on 28 February 2008, to discuss the outcomes and proposed indicators of the expert group meeting. DAW has initiated work for the development of a coordinated database on violence against women, as requested by the General Assembly (A/RES/61/143, para. 19).Hide
UN Women together with ILO, UNDP, UNFPA, UNICEF, UNODC, OHCHR and WHO supported the preparations for and successful conclusion of CSW 57. This included the convening of a high level side event with the Secretary General and the Heads of 11 UN agencies to discuss ending violence against women which resulted in a joint statement, available at: https://www.unwomen.org/en/news/stories/2013/3/joint-statement-by-heads-of-un-agencies-on-ending-violenceHide
UN agencies, including UN Women and UNFPA, supported Governments, including those of Nepal and the Pacific Islands, to prepare their national priorities for negotiations during CSW 57. UN Women also promoted the implementation of the CSW Agreed Conclusions in Fiji through the national EVAW Task Force. In preparation for the 57th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW), ESCAP and UN Women jointly organized the “Asia-Pacific Regional Preparatory Meeting for the 57th session of the Commission on the Status of Women”, 5-6 February 2013, in which senior-level representatives from 12 ESCAP Member States participated. The outcome of the meeting included recommendations on translating existing international legal and normative frameworks into effective national policy tools that address the obstacles and challenges in eliminating and preventing violence against women and girls in Asia and the Pacific.Hide
Leveraging existing accountability mechanisms for legal and policy action, UNAIDS, UNDP, UN Women and OHCHR jointly organized a briefing of the CEDAW committee on the link between HIV and violence against women.Hide
DAW, now part of UN Women, prepared reports of the Secretary-General to the sixty-third session of the General Assembly on intensification of efforts to eliminate all forms of violence against women (A/63/214), trafficking in women and girls (A/63/215), and eliminating rape and other forms of sexual violence in all their manifestations, including in conflict and related situations (A/63/216).Hide
The priority theme of the 57th Commission on the Status of Women CSW (2013) is Elimination and prevention of all forms of violence against women and girls. Several UN agencies have undertaken initiatives to mobilise on the topic, with UN Women leading the CSW process. UN Women, UNFPA, UNDP, UNICEF and WHO co-organized a first-ever Expert Group Meeting hosted in Bangkok with the support of ESCAP on prevention of violence against women in lead up to CSW. An on-line discussion on CSW 57th Session priority theme was organized from the 23rd July to the 3rd August 2012, with multiple stakeholders; and an Inter-agency consultation process for ongoing preparations for CSW 57th Session was established with UNDP, UN ESCAP, UNICEF, UNFPA, OHCHR, UNODC, ILO, WHO to ensure a coordinated UN System approach.Hide
UN Women drafted and submitted two Secretary-General’s reports on “Intensification of efforts to eliminate all forms of violence against women” (A/67/220), and “Trafficking in women and girls” (A/67/170). Technical inputs and expertise was also provided to the co-chairs of the General Assembly’s 67th Session on the resolutions on “Intensification of efforts to eliminate all forms of violence against women” (A/RES/67/144) and “Trafficking in women and girls” (A/RES/67/145), respectively, as well as to Member States more generally. Negotiations on the two resolutions were monitored throughout the GA 67th Session. Negotiations on the General Assembly’s resolution on “Intensification of global efforts for the elimination of female genital mutilations” (A/RES/67/146) were also monitored.Hide