More humane human rights. (Human rights: unfinished business).Undoubtedly one of the most important changes for women in the past few decades has been the recognition and exercise of their rights.
The most relevant legislative changes were achieved through international conventions that have become law in participating countries. It cannot be denied that these changes were the result of activities carried out by the feminist and women's movements, which have facilitated an important transformation in societies' symbolic-cultural perception, encouraged the appearance of new leadership, and nurtured a debate regarding the nature of democratic citizenship in countries throughout the world.
But we still have a long way to go. The basis of many economic policies continues to be the "productive citizen," a masculine paradigm in which men are conceived as the principal and most stable income providers and, as such, entitled to social and economic rights. The major challenge we face is influencing the focus of economic policies, integrating them into social development, especially in the current context of economic globalization globalization
Process by which the experience of everyday life, marked by the diffusion of commodities and ideas, is becoming standardized around the world. Factors that have contributed to globalization include increasingly sophisticated communications and transportation and fundamentalisms of every kind.
Local Realities and Rights
The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW CEDAW Convention to Eliminate All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (United Nations)
CEDAW Component Explosives Damage Assessment Workbook (reference for blast effects software modeling) , 1979-1981), the CEDAW Optional Protocol and the agreements from the World Conference on Human Rights (Vienna, 1993), the International Conference on Population and Development The United Nations coordinated an International Conference on Population and Development in Cairo, Egypt from 5-13 September 1994. Its resulting Programme of Action is the steering document for the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA). (Cairo, 1994), the Fourth World Conference on Women The United Nations convened the Fourth World Conference on Women on September 4-15, 1995 in Beijing, China. Delegates had prepared a Platform for Action that aimed at achieving greater equality and opportunity for women. (Beijing, 1994) and even the World Conference Against Racism The World Conference against Racism (WCAR) are international events organized by the UNESCO in order to struggle against racism ideologies and behaviours. Three conferences have been held so far, in 1978, 1983 and 2001. , Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia Xenophobia
Chinese rising aimed at ousting foreign interlopers (1900). [Chinese Hist. and Related Intolerance (Durban, 2001) have all been essential tools. Yet this enormous progress, fruit of the efforts of the women's movement, must be implemented and made to "really" exist in very different national and local contexts.
Many governments deny the existence of legalized discrimination against women. In most countries in the South, and even moreso in Muslim countries, formal laws are often overruled by custom. Even when the Constitution provides equal rights for women, reality sustains gender discrimination in the majority of public and private spheres.
Some Muslim countries lack even the illusion of the separation of constitutional law and custom, as both fall under the jurisdiction of the Sharia, or Islamic jurisprudence jurisprudence (jr'ĭsprd`əns), study of the nature and the origin and development of law. . Even in Latin American countries List of American countries
1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of: according to historians.
2. In keeping with: according to instructions.
3. Western precepts and where women's rights The effort to secure equal rights for women and to remove gender discrimination from laws, institutions, and behavioral patterns.
The women's rights movement began in the nineteenth century with the demand by some women reformers for the right to vote, known as suffrage, and are apparently respected, women are prohibited from making decisions regarding their own bodies or sexuality and are punished to the full extent of law and by society when they do so. One example related to the situation of adolescent women was the United States' insistence that any term or concept related to abortion be excluded from the final declaration of the last UN Summit on Children (May 2002).
In some "advanced" Western countries, it is still difficult for sex workers to get a fair trial in cases of rape or sexual violence. In countries like France, Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands and now Switzerland, abortion is only allowed if the woman is in a state of "crisis" or "desperation," and even those cases are subject to a doctor's approval.
Because violence is perceived as inevitable in any number of occasions and contexts, numerous violations of women's human rights are still allowed in many countries, including female genital mutilation female genital mutilation: see circumcision. , child brides, mail-order brides, polygamy polygamy: see marriage.
Marriage to more than one spouse at a time. Although the term may also refer to polyandry (marriage to more than one man), it is often used as a synonym for polygyny (marriage to more than one woman), which appears as a non-reciprocal marriage right, and marital rape--which is not considered a violation of any law. The same is true of the violence used to target specific communities (ethnic cleansing ethnic cleansing
The creation of an ethnically homogenous geographic area through the elimination of unwanted ethnic groups by deportation, forcible displacement, or genocide. ). There is sexism that is termed "civilized" (Western) and sexism that is classified as "barbaric" (non-Western). (1) Human rights are hierarchically ranked according to their contexts.
Most, if not all, of these violations have been dealt with at UN international conferences or in other international forums. However, even though enormous advances have been made thanks to these events, the fact that decisions should be made by those who are most directly affected by the consequences has not yet been recognized (much less implemented). In no way do I mean to imply that the international conferences and agreements (on which women's and feminist movements have done extraordinary work) are of no use. It is clear that we would have no legal, material or formal recognition of the rights of women and other excluded populations without them. These events and the documents signed into law force governments to be less villainous.
Nonetheless, thousands of women and girls continue to be kidnapped and forced into prostitution despite international treaties or agreements. We live in a world where the rape of women is systematically used as a weapon of war, a world in which the concentration of wealth in a small segment of the population leaves millions in the most brutal poverty, which is the greatest of all human rights violations. Proclaiming social, economic and cultural rights without guaranteeing them has serious consequences and can become a vicious circle A Vicious Circle (1996) is a novel by Amanda Craig which dissects and satirizes contemporary British society. In particular, it describes the world of publishing -- its aspiring young authors, busy agents and opportunist literary critics. . With regard to concepts of development, structural adjustment policies and commitments to eliminate poverty, the mechanisms are weak and ineffective.
We Are the Context
This is the reality of millions of women, one that will not be easily changed by micro-credit programs or laws aimed at promoting gender equality. (2) The diverse contexts, their priorities and the contradictions or inconsistencies that form part of women's daily lives in the paradoxical spaces created by the global economy and religious fundamentalism must be placed not only on women's agendas but on those of governments and other groups in civil society. (3)
In the context of the South, the constant undermining of rights increases the risk of an abstract and idealized i·de·al·ize
v. i·de·al·ized, i·de·al·iz·ing, i·de·al·iz·es
1. To regard as ideal.
2. To make or envision as ideal.
1. justice that fails to take into account differences among countries or differences within each country. And as if this weren't enough, the differentiated effects of adjustment policies on men and women would seem to be "neutralized" by the existence of laws that do not allow for these differences. This leaves us a panorama of theoretical and practical contradictions regarding human rights, which become more and more "characteristic" and "typical" of our region.
Context is what differentiates our specific realities, and this diversity has led us to examine our role as women from the South in our efforts to defend our rights and to build citizenship and democracy, questioning and searching out new meanings in the most collective fashion possible, in this context, sustainable development Sustainable development is a socio-ecological process characterized by the fulfilment of human needs while maintaining the quality of the natural environment indefinitely. The linkage between environment and development was globally recognized in 1980, when the International Union is a constant challenge, as is the current problem of gender inequality in matters pertaining to the protection of the environment, economic well-being and social equality "Equal Rights" redirects here. for the motto, see Equal Rights (motto)
Social equality is a social state of affairs in which certain different people have the same status in a certain respect, at the very least in voting rights, freedom of speech and assembly, the extent of .
In general, the obstacles to women's full participation in sustainable development and public life can be grouped into three categories: 1) constitutional factors, including administrative and legal areas; 2) cultural, social, psychological and behavioral factors; and 3) economic factors, such as access to and ownership of resources. (4) The following areas have been identified as priority areas and indicators for achieving gender equality in sustainable development: women's human rights and control over their own lives; the eradication of poverty; women's access to the control and management of resources and services; the impact of globalization; and funding for development, reproductive health Within the framework of WHO's definition of health as a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity, reproductive health, or sexual health/hygiene and the environment.
In regard to globalization--which has clear consequences in the processes of sustainable development in our regions and involves not only economic issues but also important social, political and legal aspects--I would like to highlight two issues. The first is the role of transnational corporations and their social and environmental behavior. The second is changes in employment and new forms of job insecurity.
Among the effects of market liberalization lib·er·al·ize
v. lib·er·al·ized, lib·er·al·iz·ing, lib·er·al·iz·es
To make liberal or more liberal: "Our standards of private conduct have been greatly liberalized . . . and deregulation Deregulation
The reduction or elimination of government power in a particular industry, usually enacted to create more competition within the industry.
Traditional areas that have been deregulated are the telephone and airline industries. is the increasingly marked tendency for transnational corporations to locate parts of their production processes in different regions of the world, subcontracting workers in absolute desperation who form the last link in the chain of production. These multinational corporations
intr.v. em·i·grat·ed, em·i·grat·ing, em·i·grates
To leave one country or region to settle in another. See Usage Note at migrate. while another segment will be integrated into seasonal work, such as agro-exportation and piecework piecework, work for which the laborer is paid on the basis of the amount of work done. The system is best adapted to standardized operations in which quantity is preferred to quality. Its advocates maintain that it pays the worker according to his ability. production of shoes, clothing or household appliances. All of these forms of employment--partial, seasonal, self-employment and subcontracting--are characterized by lack of job security, inadequate incomes, instability, lack of social security and the use of large numbers of women as the principal source of labor Source of Labor was a rap band loosely associated with the female rap act Beyond Reality, both of which performed at the all day Rap Festival (featuring 30 or more of the top regional rap/hip-hop acts of that time). . The decentralization de·cen·tral·ize
v. de·cen·tral·ized, de·cen·tral·iz·ing, de·cen·tral·iz·es
1. To distribute the administrative functions or powers of (a central authority) among several local authorities. of the production process, which is also spatial, is a consequence of accelerated technological development, and lack of preparation for adapting to these new technological requirements tends to deepen social exclusion social exclusion
Sociol the failure of society to provide certain people with those rights normally available to its members, such as employment, health care, education, etc. . The rights of women with precarious jobs or of those who choose migration as a survival strategy are seldom respected in any context, regardless of a given country's membership in the International Labour Organisation and ratification of ILO ILO
International Labor Organization
Noun 1. ILO - the United Nations agency concerned with the interests of labor
International Labor Organization, International Labour Organization resolutions.
One of the consequences of globalization and job instability is the ineffectiveness of labor unions. There is a notorious drop in contracts (or collective agreements): workers sign individual contracts and may even lose rights that they had previously won. There are no opportunities for traditional unionizing, and alternative forms of defending workers' rights seldom materialize in these cases. While not a new phenomenon, the plight of women maquila ma·qui·la
A maquiladora. workers is a prime example. This type of job instability affects men and women differently since the workers employed in the maquilas or as domestic servants are predominantly female, and these same women continue to fulfill other roles in social reproduction (the double or triple workday).
When a man with unstable employment gets divorced or separated, his wife has no way to ensure the transfer of child support, which directly affects the woman and her children.
These types of jobs do not guarantee women the right to maternity leave maternity leave n → baja por maternidad
maternity leave maternity n → congé m de maternité
maternity leave maternity n or to other benefits associated with the birth of their children. Nor do women with unstable jobs or women who participate in the informal market have access to social security. The decline or elimination of these types of rights affects not only women but also the reproduction of society as a whole.
The phenomenon of job insecurity is not new. Informal employment has been a characteristic of women's work in almost every part of the world: self-employment, piecework, unpaid rural family work, and domestic labor. None of these offer social security coverage, and all of them are characterized by instability, long hours, lack of contracts or short-term contracts, etc. The difference lies in the new modes of instability that come into being as a result of globalization and the change of the role played by the State. How do we protect our rights in these situations?
In regard to the defense of these rights, it is worth taking a closer look at the initiatives calling for the inclusion of social clauses in Free Trade Agreements, not only as a declaration of principles, but as a way of ensuring the inclusion of mechanisms that can have a real impact for workers. Also of interest are the efforts by various international NGOs to promote transnational corporations' use of codes of conduct and the campaigns for workers' dignity.
Strategies for adding specific clauses that impede the importation of goods produced under questionable environmental or working conditions (not only child labor child labor, use of the young as workers in factories, farms, and mines. Child labor was first recognized as a social problem with the introduction of the factory system in late 18th-century Great Britain. , but also cheap female labor) should be promoted with greater force. Much more pressure should be put on governments to increase training, offer benefits and create a competitive and high-quality work force of women and men. In regard to social policy, governments should be encouraged to establish a minimum wage for men and women in order to guarantee the availability of resources necessary for facing the realities of growing old.
Ten years after Agenda 21 (Rio de Janeiro Rio de Janeiro, city, Brazil
Rio de Janeiro (rē`ō də zhänā`rō, Port. rē` thĭ zhənĕē`r , 1992), and in recognition of advances made in regard to putting into practice the Right to Development, the International Monetary Fund's position is being challenged by the UN agencies' work to prioritize human rights over other international agreements and the many campaigns organized by global civil society in order to ensure that social, economic and cultural rights are not subordinated to the rules of international commerce in multilateral agreements. At the time of this writing, it is still unclear whether the World Summit on Sustainable Development (Johannesburg, August 2002) will incorporate a human rights focus as part of a substantial debate among governments.
Now is the time for civil society to present development models that move away from financial dependence and the external market and towards economic models that place emphasis on domestic markets, abilities and resources, particularly people. The challenge is to seek out and attempt to create a new global ideology with a more human face, an ideology that replaces the market, recognizing human rights as a top priority.
(1.) Cheifter, Silvia (2002). Prologue to "Globalizacion, contrageografias y resistencias" in Travesias (Buenos Aires Buenos Aires (bwā`nəs ī`rēz, âr`ēz, Span. bwā`nōs ī`rās), city and federal district (1991 pop. : CECYM) vol. 9, no. 10, May, pp. 5-10.
(2.) Tauli-Corpuz, Victoria (2001). "Diversity, Universality and Democracy: A Perspective of an Indigenous Women" in Women in Action (Manila: ISIS International) no. 3, pp. 35-38.
(3.) Underhill-Sem, Ivonne (2001)."Women in Paradoxical Places: "Out of Place in the South and in the North" in Women in Action (Manila: ISIS International) no. 3, pp. 31-34.
(4.) Heinrich Boll Foundation (2001). Towards Earth Summit 2002, Social Briefing Paper No. 2.
RELATED ARTICLE: Equality now Equality Now is a non-governmental organization that works to protect the human rights of women around the world. The group provides an international framework for spreading awareness of issues and providing support to local grassroots groups working to address issues of concern to taking action for the human rights of women.
For too long, human rights violations against women have been denied the attention and concern of international organizations, national governments, traditional human rights groups and the press. Meanwhile, hundreds of millions of girls and women around the globe continue to endure debilitating de·bil·i·tat·ing
Causing a loss of strength or energy.
Weakening, or reducing the strength of.
Mentioned in: Stress Reduction and often fatal human rights abuses.
India: A 10-year-old girl is rescued by a flight attendant who notices her crying. Her father has sold her to the 60-year-old Saudi Arabian man sitting next to her for the equivalent of US$240.
Kenya: At a boarding school, 300 boys attack the girls' dormitory. Seventy-one girls are raped. Nineteen are trampled to death in the stampede to escape. The school's vice principal remarks, 'The boys never meant any harm against the girls. They just wanted to rape."
Brazil: A man who confessed to stabbing his wife and her lover to death is acquitted of murder for the second time by an all-male jury. The acquittal is based on the argument that he acted in legitimate defense of his wronged honor.
Ireland: A 14-year-old girl, raped by the father of her best friend, learns she is pregnant. She is prohibited from traveling to England where abortion is legal. Only when she indicates she will commit suicide Verb 1. commit suicide - kill oneself; "the terminally ill patient committed suicide"
kill - cause to die; put to death, usually intentionally or knowingly; "This man killed several people when he tried to rob a bank"; "The farmer killed a pig for the holidays" if forced to carry the pregnancy to term does the Supreme Court allow her to proceed.
United States United States, officially United States of America, republic (2005 est. pop. 295,734,000), 3,539,227 sq mi (9,166,598 sq km), North America. The United States is the world's third largest country in population and the fourth largest country in area. : A 51-year-old woman is stabbed 19 times and killed by her former boyfriend as she waits inside a courthouse to renew a protection order. Twice before he had been charged with harassment. Both times the charges were dropped.
These are only a few instances of abuses which occur every single day. Human rights violations against women must be documented, publicized--and stopped. We need Equality Now.
RELATED ARTICLE: About equality now.
Founded in 1992 to work for the protection and promotion of the human rights of women around the world, Equality Now is an international human rights organization dedicated to action for the civil, political, economic and social rights of girls and women. Taking advantage of both traditional and "high-tech" action techniques--such as letter-writing and fax campaigns, video witnessing, media events and public information activities--Equality Now mobilizes action on behalf of individual women whose rights are being violated and promotes women's rights at local, national and international levels. Working with national human rights organizations and individual activists, Equality Now documents violence and discrimination against women and adds an international action component to support their efforts to advance equal rights and defend individual women who are suffering abuse.
Through its Women's Action Network, Equality Now distributes information about these human rights violations to concerned groups and individuals around the world, along with recommended actions for publicizing and protesting them. The Women's Action Network is committed to voicing a worldwide call for justice and equality for women.
Issues of urgent concern to Equality Now include rape, domestic violence, reproductive rights Reproductive rights or procreative liberty is what supporters view as human rights in areas of sexual reproduction. Advocates of reproductive rights support the right to control one's reproductive functions, such as the rights to reproduce (such as opposition to forced , trafficking of women, female genital mutilation, gender discrimination, female infanticide Female infanticide, the prevalent form of sex-selective infanticide, is the systematic killing of girls at or soon after birth. It normally occurs when a society values male children to the point that producing a female is considered dishonorable, shameful, or an unacceptable , sexual harassment sexual harassment, in law, verbal or physical behavior of a sexual nature, aimed at a particular person or group of people, especially in the workplace or in academic or other institutional settings, that is actionable, as in tort or under equal-opportunity statutes. , pornography, and equal access to economic opportunity and political participation.
From the website of Equality Now, http://www.equalitynow.org.
The author is a Chilean sociologist and has worked with international development agencies for over twenty years TWENTY YEARS. The lapse of twenty years raises a presumption of certain facts, and after such a time, the party against whom the presumption has been raised, will be required to prove a negative to establish his rights.
2. . She collaborates with Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era (DAWN) and the Red de Educacion Popular entre Mujeres (REPEM, Women's Grassroots Education Network)