Tuesday, September 14, 2010

UN Makes Important Step Towards Achieving MDGs

The third Millennium Development Goal is to promote gender equality and empower women. Today, the UN made an important step towards achieving this goal in announcing that Michelle Bachelet, the former president of Chile, will head the new UN agency, UN Women. In a show of commitment, the UN has moved at an unprecedented rate in getting UN Women into action. Created as part of a reform agenda in July 2010, UN Women should be fully operational by January 2011.

UN Women merges four existing bodies focusing on gender issues: the UN Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM), the Division for the Advancement of Women, the Office of the Special Adviser on Gender Issues, and the UN International Training and Research Institute for the Advancement of Women. By bringing together these bodies, women are given a stronger voice at the international level. Stronger advocacy for the rights of women can move the UN and member states to take more concrete actions towards the achievement of the UN MDGs.

"UN Women is a recognition of a simple truth. Equality for women and girls is not only a basic human rights, it is a social and economic imperative. Where women are educated and empowered, economies are more productive and strong. Where women are fully represented, societies are more peaceful and stable." -UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-Moon

-Erica Stetz