Peace & Peace-building

From ancient times to the modern era, women have been at the forefront of disarmament, anti-war and anti-violence campaigns. In many countries, from Liberia and Rwanda to Northern Ireland, Afghanistan and Argentina, women’s activism has had a decisive impact on reducing conflict and encouraging reconciliation. Yet, women are usually absent from formal peace negotiations and processes. UNIFEM has reported that in ten major peace processes in the past decade, women represented only 6 percent of negotiators and less than 3 percent of signatories to peace agreements. With the passage of UN Security Council Resolution 1325, however, international recognition and support are growing for women as strategic partners in peacebuilding. Securing the active participation of women and girls increases the sustainability of peace efforts and contributes to long-term post-conflict recovery and reconstruction.

Women, Business, and the Law

 Women, Business and the Law is a World Bank report that presents indicators based on laws and regulations affecting women's prospects as entrepreneurs and employees, in part drawing on laws contained in the Gender Law Library. Both resources can inform research and policy discussions on how to improve women's economic opportunities and outcomes.

URL: 
http://wbl.worldbank.org/

Gender Equality and Female Empowerment

Dr. Rajiv Shah, Administrator for the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), launched the Agency's new Policy on Gender Equality and Female Empowerment.
 
Citing its importance, Dr. Shah stated, "We know that long-term, sustainable development will only be possible when women and men enjoy equal opportunity to rise to their potential. But today, women and girls continue to face disadvantages in every sector in which we work, and in other cases, boys are falling behind. With this policy, we can ensure our values and commitments are reflected in durable, meaningful results for all."
 
USAID Deputy Administrator, Ambassador Donald Steinberg, Gayle Smith, Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for Development, and other senior White House officials participated in the launch.
URL: 
http://www.usaid.gov/our_work/policy_planning_and_learning/documents/GenderEqualityPolicy.pdf

What the Women Say: The Arab Spring and Implications for Women

 ICAN's first MENA regional issue brief. 


As the Arab world rumbles and shakes, women in the region are experiencing the good, the bad and the ugly that comes with instability, transition and crisis. From Tunisia and Egypt to Syria, Libya and Bahrain, women have been present and vocal in the street protest movements, standing shoulder to shoulder with the men, resisting the batons and tear gas, and being killed. Many have been key organizers and leaders in social networking, helping to articulate a common message and vision of freedom, democracy and equality, and providing logistical support to men at the frontlines of violence. They have also faced many of the
same physical and sexual threats and risks that women elsewhere have encountered during crises and transitions, including harassment, assault and death.

Despite their contribution, they are again facing exclusion from the political processes under way.

URL: 
http://www.icanpeacework.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/ICAN17.pdf
Member Organization: 

Girls Grow: A Vital Force in Rural Economies

 In August 2010, The Chicago Council announced an initiative to bring attention to the role of girls in rural economies of developing countries and identify opportunities to increase investment in women and girls as a tool for economic growth and social stability. Catherine Bertini, currently a Chicago Council senior fellow and Professor of Public Administration and International Affairs at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University, served as chair of the project.

URL: 
http://www.thechicagocouncil.org/files/Studies_Publications/TaskForcesandStudies/Girls_and_Rural_Economies.aspx

Sri Lanka: Women’s Insecurity in the North and East

 Women in Sri Lanka’s predominantly Tamil-speaking north and east are facing a desperate lack of security in the aftermath of the long civil war. Today many still live in fear of violence from various sources. Those who fall victim to it have little means of redress. Women’s economic security is precarious, and their physical mobility is limited. The heavily militarised and centralised control of the north and east – with almost exclusively male, Sinhalese security forces – raises particular problems for women there in terms of their safety, sense of security and ability to access assistance. They have little control over their lives and no reliable institutions to turn to. The government has mostly dismissed women’s security issues and exacerbated fears, especially in the north and east. The international community has failed to appreciate and respond effectively to the challenges faced by women and girls in the former war zone.

URL: 
http://www.crisisgroup.org/en/regions/asia/south-asia/sri-lanka/217-sri-lanka-womens-insecurity-in-the-north-and-east.aspx

Women, Peace, and Security - US Policy Should Support UNSC Resolution 1325

By Shyama Venkateswar, Ph.D.*
The National Council for Research on Women participates in the US Civil Society Working Group on Women, Peace, and Security. We are currently disseminating a statement and recommendations to encourage more robust US policies and programs to ensure that women's voices and organizations are fully represented throughout diplomacy, peace-building and post-conflict reconstruction efforts. In publishing this statement, the Working Group aims to transform declaratory support into concrete action and engender effective outcomes that bring peace, security, and dignity to the lives of women, men, and chiildren in conflict and crisis settings. Please help us spread the word about this important initiative. Click here to read the statement.


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