UN commission reaffirms women’s leadership in the fight against climate change
The 66th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW66), the second largest United Nations intergovernmental meeting in New York, closed its two-week session, recognizing the important role of women and girls as agents of change for sustainable development, protecting the environment and combating the adverse effects of climate change.
The agreed conclusions adopted by member states on Thursday provide a blueprint for world leaders to promote the full and equal participation and leadership of women and girls in the design and implementation of climate change policies and programs, environment and disaster risk reduction (DRR).
UN Women Executive Director Sima Bahous said: “The agreements reached by the commission come at a time when the world urgently needs new and coherent solutions to the interrelated crises that affect us all.
“We now have a path with practical and specific measures for global resilience and recovery, and a common understanding that the solutions depend on bringing women and girls to the center. Let’s capitalize on the work done here, put these agreements into immediate practice and push those decisions through all the major forums to come, including COP27.”
CSW66 also recognized the disproportionate impacts of climate change, environmental degradation and disasters that affect women and girls, such as loss of homes and livelihoods, water scarcity, destruction of schools and health facilities, and underscored the urgency of eliminating persistent historical and structural inequalities, discriminatory laws and policies, negative social norms and gender stereotypes that perpetuate multiple and intersecting forms of discrimination .
Due to displacement, including forced and protracted displacement, women and girls face specific challenges, including separation from support networks, increased risk of all forms of violence, and reduced access to employment , education and essential health services, including sexual services. and reproductive health care services and psychosocial support.
The commission also expressed concern that the economic and social fallout from the Covid pandemic has compounded the impacts of climate change, environmental degradation and pushed people further behind and into extremes. poverty.
The global Covid-19 pandemic has also increased the demand for unpaid care and domestic work and reported incidents of all forms of violence.
The commission called on the United Nations system, international financial institutions and multi-stakeholder platforms to continue supporting Member States to achieve gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls in the context of policies. and climate change, environmental and disaster risk reduction programs.
Only by addressing the underlying barriers that exacerbate women’s vulnerabilities in their social and economic status, security, well-being and livelihoods will it be possible to address the widespread disadvantages in accessing, owning and controlling land and resources; equal access to services such as universal health care and quality education, prevention of gender-based violence; and the equal sharing of unpaid care and domestic work that hinders women’s resilience and rights.
The outcome document calls for leveraging and strengthening the full, equal and meaningful participation and influence of women and girls.
Specific efforts must be made to amplify the voices and knowledge of marginalized women, including indigenous women, older women, women with disabilities, migrant women and those living in rural, remote, conflict-prone and conflict-prone areas. disasters.
Their contributions must be heard and included in the management, conservation and sustainable use of natural resources and climate change mitigation and adaptation initiatives and programs.
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