Empower Women in Politics and Public Life


A recent address to the United Nations Council highlighted the urgent need to combat gender-based violence and elevate the participation of women in politics and public spheres. The UN High Commissioner emphasized that these issues require immediate attention and a zero-tolerance approach to violence against women. Female human rights defenders, women journalists, and women in public office often face targeted attacks as they challenge traditional norms and social conventions.

The statistics are alarming: a study across 39 countries found that over 80% of women parliamentarians experienced psychological violence, with threats of death, rape, and beatings affecting 44.4% of them. Additionally, a UNESCO study revealed that 73% of women journalists encountered online violence, including fake news and threats.

To address these challenges, comprehensive changes are needed. National legal frameworks must be strengthened to ensure gender equality and protect women from violence both online and offline. Zero-tolerance codes of conduct and effective reporting mechanisms are crucial. Quotas for women in public and political roles, awareness campaigns, and support for women in politics are essential steps.

Challenging outdated notions is key, including redefining domestic and caregiving roles and promoting economic incentives and gender equality campaigns. Education plays a vital role, requiring the integration of women's achievements into curricula and encouraging their participation in male-dominated fields like STEM.

Ultimately, the call to action is a collective pursuit for a more equitable society. Gender equality benefits entire communities, making it essential for Member States and governing bodies to take transformative action against gender-based violence and to promote women's participation and leadership in public and political life.

"Immense strides have been made in the quest for gender equality, but major barriers thrown up by the patriarchal system must be dismantled so women can play a fuller role in politics and public life, the UN human rights chief Volker Türk told the UN Human Rights Council on Friday."