Gender Equality: Is the High Level Panel Listening?

gender_equality_2Poverty justice campaigners, led by the Feminist Task Force, have sent the UN High Level Panel on Post 2015 a clear message: gender equality is essential to end poverty. But did the panelists receive it?

The “Gender Equality to End Poverty” statement complements the “Red Flag” message and was drafted at the Bonn civil society forum “Advancing the Post 2015 Sustainable Development Agenda”. Individuals and organisations are invited to endorse the statement. Key messages include the need to

  • respect women’s human rights
  • address all forms of Gender-Based Violence and recognise GBV as a driver of generational poverty for women
  • reverse structural drivers of women’s poverty and inequality like a lack of access to land ownership
  • guarantee sexual and reproductive health and rights
  • create a world free of discrimination and violence based on sexual orientation and gender identity
  • promote literacy and access to both formal and informal education for all girls and women
  • recognise and address the links between the climate change, land grabs, the extractives development model and their devastating impact on women
  • develop economic indicators that include the care economy and social reproduction
  • ensure that the voices socially-excluded, disenfranchised and marginalised women are heard and that they are part of decision-making processes.

“The UN High Level Panel on the Post 2015 Development Agenda has declared that their vision is ‘to end poverty in our lifetime’,” notes FTF global director Rosa Lizarde. “But it is clear that women across the globe are becoming increasingly impoverished. If we do not transform the current political, cultural and economic systems by placing women at the heart of the Post 2015 development framework, we will not be able to end poverty and inequality.”

While the Gender Equality to End Poverty statement was sent to Bali for the High Level Panel meeting there, it appears that at the Bali Women’s Round Table no members of the High Level Panel were present, only their sherpas (representatives).

The communique meanwhile that was released at the end of the High Level Panel meeting makes only one very general reference to women or gender – “we heard reports from women, youth and the informal sector” – without addressing any specific gender issues.

To ensure that the High Level Panel includes women’s concerns before the ink dries on their report, the FTF is asking organisations and individuals to support the Gender Equality to End Poverty Statement. You can read – and endorse – the statement in its entirety here.

Article courtesy of

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