NAWO’s international work includes:
- Engaging with the annual policy-making gathering the United Nations’ Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) (unwomen.org).
- Upholding the Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women (ohchr.org).
- Upholding the Beijing Platform for Action engaging with European processes and stakeholders, including the European Women’s Lobby (un.org).
- Working on issues to do with women and girls in other UN processes including the Human Rights Council, Universal Periodic Review, Commission on Social Development etc.
- Participating in W20 (w20saudiarabia.org.sa) (Press release of UN Women and Women 20 call on G20 members…).
- Acting as the Secretariat for the UK Civil Society Women’s Alliance (UKCSWA).
Participation in the Economic and Social Council and its subsidiary bodies and/or conferences and other United Nations meetings
Since 1999, NAWO has attended and played an active role in NGO participation at the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW).
As well as submitting written statements which become part of the official documentation of the Session, NAWO has lobbied particular delegates and has also taken the opportunity to meet with the European Union delegation and European NGOs whilst attending CSW.
In addition, NAWO works together with other civil society women’s organisations in a larger geographical grouping through its membership of the European Women’s Lobby [EWL], the North America and Europe caucus (NA&E) and as Secretariat of the UK Civil Society Women’s Alliance (UKCSWA).
Currently our Director is the Chair of UKCSWA and a member of the NA&E caucus core group. Two Board members – Pat Black and Wendi Momen – are Vice Chairs of UKCSWA.
Geneva Preparation committees
NAWO Board members attended the preparatory NGO forum in Geneva in October 2019 as part of the European and ECE Regional Prepcom for CSW64; NAWO worked with other participating NGOs to ensure robus language on all areas of concern.
The Director, Board members and members attend CEDAW regularly and participated in the special meetings on Trafficking and WPS in February 2019. The Director and NAWO members attended the examination of the UK under CEDAW and contributed to the Shadow Report. NAWO continues to work with members to raise awareness of CEDAW and encourage HMG to implement it robustly across the UK. NAWO Director, attended a consultation with the Government Equalities Office in preparation for their report to CEDAW. NAWO members engaged with the Equalities and Human Rights Commission in its work pre and post UK examination under CEDAW with NAWO coordinating the NGOs attending Geneva in February for the examination.
Activities in line with Agenda 2030
NAWO works with both NAWO Membership and Organisations from the UK Civil Society Women’s Alliance to advocate for the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals, which replaced the Millenium Development Goals.
NAWO considers that all the activities it undertakes towards the empowerment of women are in line with the SDGs, especially since much of its work is educational in the broadest sense. If the UN body including accredited NGOs are active and actively involved in the arguments against women’s continuing poverty, experience of violence, lack of basic freedoms, prevention of the girl child from attending school, lack of the right to freedom of movement and so forth, then globally its status and its actions are strengthened.
Co-operation with United Nations bodies
A Human Right to Peace
NAWO has also supported the campaign for a new UN Human Right to Peace led by David Fernandez Puyana, Director of the World Campaign on the Human Right to Peace. The Declaration was brought to the attention of the Human Rights Council and its Advisory Committee as a final contribution from international civil society to the international codification process of the right to peace. The United Nations and its member States and experts have before them a solid text, which should be the basis of the official codification of the right to peace.
This campaign also seeks to debate the necessity for and eventually establish an International Observatory of the Human Right to Peace integrated in the SSIHRL. This institution would, inter alia, promote and implement the Declaration on the Human Right to Peace world-wide. It would also ensure that the current process comes to a successful conclusion in the UN General Assembly.
NAWO’s particular contribution has been to keep the issue of a gendered lens and a gender focus to the fore in all the work on the Human Right to Peace.