The Convention and Committee and the
Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action

Participant displays a poster she created at a workshop organized by the University of the Philippines Centre for Women’s Studies and UNIFEM on enhancing the capacities of NGOs to monitor CEDAW, Cebu, Philippines, December 2008.
Participant displays a poster she created at a workshop organized by the University of the Philippines Centre for Women’s Studies and UNIFEM on enhancing the capacities of NGOs to monitor CEDAW. Cebu, The Philippines, December 2008. (Photo: UNIFEM/Leigh Pasqual.)

The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women identifies the scope of States parties’ obligations to eliminate discrimination against women and to realize the principle of equality of women and men both in law and in practice. The Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action (1995) is the global community’s most comprehensive policy document for the empowerment of women and gender equality. The Declaration famously stated that “women’s rights are human rights.”

In twelve critical areas of concern, the Platform highlights women’s rights under its strategic objectives, as well as in its concrete and detailed recommendations for action. One of its critical areas of concern is specifically devoted to the human rights of women, including through the full implementation of the Convention. Together, the Convention and the Platform aim at the elimination of discrimination against women on the one hand, and at ensuring the achievement of equality for women on the other.

Significant synergies in substantive content can be found between the Convention and the Platform for Action. Many of the critical areas of concern of the Platform — such as education; health; the economy and employment, including social security; participation in political life and decision making; and violence against women — are explicitly covered by the Convention and in the Committee’s general recommendations. Implementation of actions outlined in the Platform in these areas contributes directly to the promotion and protection of the respective Convention rights. The Platform invites the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women to take the Platform for Action into account when considering reports submitted by States parties. The Committee, in turn, has clarified that reports of States parties should contain information on the implementation of the Platform for Action and the outcome document [1].

Notes:

  1. Issues Paper: CSW Interactive Panel Discussion on “Synergies between national-level implementation of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action and the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women”